The Last Quarter of the Moon
written by Chi Zijian
Harvil Secker | ISBN 9781846554827
Paperback – 320 pages
Member’s price: $29.66
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'A long-time confidante of the rain and snow, I am ninety years old. The rain and snow have weathered me, and I too have weathered them'. At the end of the twentieth-century an old woman sits among the birch trees and thinks back over her life, her loves, and the joys and tragedies that have befallen her family and her people. She is a member of the Evenki tribe who wander the remote forests of north-eastern China with their herds of reindeer, living in close sympathy with nature at its most beautiful and cruel. An idyllic childhood playing by the river ends with her father's death and the growing realisation that her mother's and uncle's relationship is not as simple as she thought. Then, in the 1930s, the intimate, secluded world of the tribe is shattered when the Japanese army invades China. The Evenki cannot avoid being pulled into the brutal conflict which marks the first step towards the end of their isolation...In "The Last Quarter of the Moon", prize-winning novelist Chi Zijian, creates a dazzling epic about an extraordinary woman bearing witness not just to the stories of her tribe, full of wonder and pain, but also to the effects of the transformation of China on a hidden corner of that vast country.