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The Vagrants Paperback – 3 Sep 2009

4.1 out of 5 stars 66 customer reviews

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Product details

  • Paperback: 352 pages
  • Publisher: Fourth Estate (3 Sept. 2009)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0007196652
  • ISBN-13: 978-0007196654
  • Product Dimensions: 12.9 x 2.1 x 19.8 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.1 out of 5 stars 66 customer reviews
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 177,010 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Review

'Yiyun Li has written a book that is as important politically as it is artistically. "The Vagrants" is an enormous achievement.' Ann Patchett

'A starkly moving portrayal of China in the wake of the Cultural Revolution, this book weaves together the stories of a vivid group of characters all struggling to find a home in their own country. Yiyun Li writes with a quiet, steady force, at once stoic and heartbreaking.' Peter Ho Davies

'A masterpiece … "The Vagrants" can put you in mind of Tolstoy or Chekhov…Its mass rallies wouldn't be out of place in Margaret Atwood's dystopia, "The Handmaid's Tale"…Most of all, though, its shut-in, shabby world of party tyranny, nonstop surveillance and loudspeakers spouting propaganda into the smoky air resembles Orwell's "Nineteen Eighty-Four" – with a grim twist: Orwell's novel envisaged a nightmare that could happen; Li's describes one that did.' Peter Kemp, Sunday Times

'With its controlled understatement and scrupulous and unsparing lucidity, "The Vagrants" is a work of great moral poise and dignity. As a chronicle of political betrayal under a modern dictatorship, "The Vagrants" is a minor classic; I have not read such a compelling work in years.' Ian Thomson, Independent

‘An eloquent, brooding novel.’ Independent on Sunday

'This is a book of immense power and it will leave you reeling.' New Statesman

'This is a book of loss and pain and fear that manages to include such unexpected tenderness and grace notes that, just as one can bear it no longer, one cannot put it down. This is not an easy read, only a necessary and deeply moving one.' Amy Bloom

About the Author

Yiyun Li grew up in Beijing and came to the United States in 1996. Her debut collection, A Thousand Years of Good Prayers, won the Frank O'Connor International Short Story Award and Guardian First Book Award. Her novel, The Vagrants, was shortlisted for Dublin IMPAC Award. Her books have been translated into more than twenty languages. She was selected by Granta as one of the 21 Best Young American Novelists under 35, and was named by The New Yorker as one of the top 20 writers under 40. She lives in Oakland, California with her husband and their two sons.


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