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The Years, Months, Days

Translated by Carlos Rojas

The Years, Months, Days is a profound and moving fable about the deep love between an old man and his blind dog trying to survive in a terrible drought—there is no food, the villagers have left, but the old man has managed to nurture a corn seed that has germinated on a mountain top. He is devoted to this seedling.

The old man weighs the rays of the sun, working out the arithmetic of starvation and survival. Finally he realises that for his plant to survive, one of them has to be fertiliser. He loses the coin toss, lies in a grave he has dug and asks the dog to bury him.

Rich on so many levels, and not without its flashes of characteristic Yan Lianke humour, this cosmic tale will bring tears to readers’ eyes. The Years, Months, Days is compulsory reading for many Chinese children—and adults. You will see why.

Read Carlos Rojas’ preface in the Sydney Review of Books

Yan Lianke
About the Author

Yan Lianke was born in 1958 in Henan Province, China. Text has published his novelsServe the People!, Lenin’s Kisses, Dream of Ding Village (shortlisted for the Man Asian Literary Prize), The Four Books and The Explosion Chronicles. Yan Lianke won the Hua Zhong World Chinese Literature Prize in 2013. He has also won two of China’s most...

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Text publication date:
27 November 2017
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Praise for Yan Lianke
andThe Years, Months, Days

‘Yan Lianke is one of the best contemporary Chinese writers.’

‘A master of imaginative satire. His work is animated by an affectionate loyalty to his peasant origins in the poverty-stricken province of Henan, and fierce anger over the political abuses of the regime.’

‘One of China’s eminent and most controversial novelists and satirists.’

‘Yan Lianke well deserves to be in the Pantheon of great writers. He has no equal at attacking societal issues or the great Maoist myths in order to turn them into novels so breathtakingly powerful, shot through with black, often desperate, humor.’

Other editions ofThe Years, Months, Days
  • The Years, Months, Days
    ISBN: 9781925626186
    27 November 2017
    Buy ebook