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Download China in Ten Words Audiobook

Extended Audio Sample China in Ten Words Audiobook, by Yu Hua Click for printable size audiobook cover
3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 3.00 (379 ratings) (rate this audio book) Author: Yu Hua Narrator: Don Hagen Publisher: Gildan Audio Format: Unabridged Audiobook Delivery: Instant Download Audio Length: Release Date: April 2012 ISBN: 9781469000589
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From one of China’s most acclaimed writers, his first work of nonfiction to appear in English: a unique, intimate look at the Chinese experience over the last several decades, told through personal stories and astute analysis that sharply illuminate the country’s meteoric economic and social transformation.

Framed by ten phrases common in the Chinese vernacular—“people,” “leader,” “reading,” “writing,“ “Lu Xun” (one of the most influential Chinese writers of the twentieth century), “disparity,” “revolution,” “grassroots,” “copycat,” and “bamboozle”—China in Ten Words reveals as never before the world’s most populous yet oft-misunderstood nation. In “Disparity,” for example, Yu Hua illustrates the mind-boggling economic gaps that separate citizens of the country. In “Copycat,” he depicts the escalating trend of piracy and imitation as a creative new form of revolutionary action. And in “Bamboozle,” he describes the increasingly brazen practices of trickery, fraud, and chicanery that are, he suggests, becoming a way of life at every level of society. 

Characterized by Yu Hua’s trademark wit, insight, and courage, China in Ten Words is a refreshingly candid vision of the “Chinese miracle” and all its consequences, from the singularly invaluable perspective of a writer living in China today.

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Listener Opinions

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Jennifer Wang | 2/5/2014

    " Yu Hua is one of my favorite contemporary Chinese authors. He is 6 yrs my parents' junior so his account of the Cultural revolution is a different version from the one I've been hearing all my life. Yu Hua suggests eerie parallels and comparisons of China - then and now. I could not put this books down. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Colin Anton | 2/3/2014

    " The storytelling teetered between anecdotal and historical at times, just enough to keep me interested and inquisitive but left me wanting more of both. A semi-satirical look at China and the man that became of age during its Cultural Revolution. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Brendan | 2/2/2014

    " Much of the book will be familiar to anyone who pays attention to China, but Yu Hua has a knack for choosing *just* the right anecdotes to illustrate his points -- and doing so with an economy and directness missing from his most recent novel, 'Brothers.' He's back on form here, and is very well served by Allan H. Barr's excellent translation. Anyone with an interest in contemporary China will want to read this -- and to recommend it to any friends or family members looking to get up to speed quickly and pleasurably. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Kathy | 1/31/2014

    " I read memoirs about growing up in China, often. This one is a non-linear narrative spanning the Cultural Revolution (1967--1977) and into modern-day China. Since I didn't know much about the Cultural Revolution (even though my parents lived through that decade too), I learned a lot. The stories were good too, poetic and funny. This book was very easy to read; I read the whole thing in 24 hours, in the middle of a school week! I wasn't very compelled by two of the later words, "copycat" and "bamboozle," though (they seemed very similar and maybe not that essential?). "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Tara | 1/27/2014

    " This author showed the way China really is and was, not the propaganda that is spoon-fed us. I really enjoyed and was particularly moved by his contrasts with the culural revolutions with the market place economics happening now. Also, he really showed the huge disparity in income and level of miscommunication that is ongoing. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Alexandra | 1/26/2014

    " Entertaining and fascinating. I learned more about China in this little book than 4 years of international studies classes in college... "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Katrina | 1/25/2014

    " A little heavy-handed in some parts, but overall, a great read. Highly recommended to anyone looking for an introductory view of China, or anyone who likes good China stories. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Paul | 1/13/2014

    " A few more words are needed to give a more complete look at modern China: Corruption, prostitution, migrant labor, human rights and freedom or lack thereof. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Jane | 12/24/2013

    " Witty and funny, a pleasure to read, with lots of useful and interesting nuggets about China. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Mary | 12/23/2013

    " I found this book to be fascinating. I particularly liked the last few words ( chapters)... it gave a very frank perspective on modern day China. And if you read it, you will know why I have no desire to visit or study there. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Literary | 12/3/2013

    " Was an ok read! I learned a few new things about China. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Adam | 11/10/2013

    " I really enjoyed how the author makes you feel like you're having a conversation at a coffee house, jumping from topics and current events issues at will. A very interesting look at "normal" life in China from the Cultural Revolution onward. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Marc | 8/25/2013

    " Absolutely incredible personal stories from the authors childhood during the revolution "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Jen | 7/24/2013

    " Thought this book was fantastic as an audio book! I'm looking forward to reading a few books by Pearl S. Buck now to get an even better feel for China. "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Christoph | 6/27/2013

    " Kind of a chore, I thought. It ends up being one man's collection of folktales about China since the Cultural Revolution. Not my thing. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Readortoread | 12/19/2012

    " "China in Ten words that I know" should be a better title? After all, it is all about his personl experiences, feel like the same old rant all over again. Not a good book for studying China.:( "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Fern | 10/25/2012

    " Intriguing fusion of memoir and satire. Have always enjoyed yu hua's books and his incisive dissections of social ills. Not every story works. But there are flashes of brilliance here and there "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Megumi Terui | 10/22/2012

    " Interesting to find anecdotes and material on the Cultural Revolution, as well as offering an insight from a Chinese perspective. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Qmmayer | 7/23/2012

    " It's not always blindingly insightful, but there are some interesting essays/anecdotes here and I was charmed by his style throughout. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Liz S | 6/8/2012

    " Great read. Mixes personal memoir with social commentary about modern China very deftly. The language is almost overwhelmingly simple, but the stories are delicate and complex. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 angela | 5/26/2012

    " Provides interesting insights into Chinese culture and addresses reasons behind their world view. Really enjoyed this book...easy to read too! "

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About the Narrator

Don Hagen has been behind the microphone since fifth grade. He is a nine-time winner of the Peer Award for narration/voice-over and twice winner of an AudioFile Earphones Award. He has also been heard in radio and television commercials and documentaries. In addition to his freelance voice work, he is a member of the audiobook narration team at the Library of Congress.