…I prefer the original series beard. Bring it back, Dave!
…it is a fan blog, after all. And I know I’m not the only fan (as evidenced by some action on the Forums after only one day of being live). If there is anybody who has reflections, opinions, fair criticisms, breaking news, or any other relevant info about the Chung Kuo series, then I’d love to have some other contributors to this site.
In the interest of full disclosure, I do (and will continue to) receive the revenue from the Google ads at the right in an attempt to recoup the funds that pay for the domain and hosting of this site — so far I’m up to around $1.79 or so after two months, not quite enough to quit my day job yet. Also, as the administrator of the site, I’ll retain editorial control of all the content, which isn’t to say that I won’t agree to the posting of entries that I disagree with (quite the opposite!), but I do want to maintain a certain standard of content, including relevance and quality of writing. Indeed, a thorough command of the English language is an expected pre-requisite.
What I’m thinking is that I’ll post your first entry (under your name or nickname), and for any further content I’ll create a WordPress username and account for you. If anyone’s interested, hit me up at ofgiftsandstones [[at]] gmail.com and we’ll discuss how we’ll get started!
Despite what conclusions you might draw from the picture above, I’m actually not obsessed (that is, going by the clinical definition of the word), but I do find myself compelled to buy any copies of Chung Kuo novels I see when visiting any used bookstores. That’s led to the modest collection you see here. It’s not a creepy stalker fixation — it started with just wanting the ability to lend the book freely to friends and family without worry of getting it back (no one ever returns borrowed books; that’s a universal truth) and it just sort of grew from there. All eight books of the original series are represented here, at least once. There was a time when Marriage of the Living Dark could go used for roughly $150 on the used market, but I couldn’t bring myself to part with it. MotLD runs around $45 or so on AbeBooks these days.
Happily, I now have one more book to add to the collection… the limited edition Son of Heaven, numbered and signed, imported from England, still in shrinkwrap… how it will remain for the foreseeable future.
Anyone else have a Chung Kuo shelf collection?
PS – Yes, those are the Myst books on the left side. Where else would I put those?
On this day, back in 1857, the Second Opium War was started when Britain and France declared war on the Qing Dynasty of China after it refused to open its ports and legalize the opium trade. The aftermath set the stage for the next century and a half of relations between China and the UK, culminating in the return of Hong Kong to Communist China in July 1997.
Coincidentally, Son of Heaven has just arrived in hardcover. Go get it. And if you’re in London, make it a point to head out for the launch party! If you’re in the states, you can import it from Amazon UK here.
Mr. Wingrove will be officially launching the hardcover version of Son of Heaven on Thursday, March 3, at the Forbidden Planet Megastore on Shaftesbury Ave in London at 6pm. It’s a bit of a trek for us Yanks, and I won’t be making the cross-Atlantic voyage. But, if you’re in the area, it’ll be an event not to be missed. I understand he’ll be doing some signing and talking about the series and all that good stuff.
Here’s the link on the Forbidden Planet site: http://forbiddenplanet.com/events/2011/03/03/david-wingrove-launching-son-heaven/
Although not stated on that site, I’m told that you should RSVP with Mr. Wingrove’s publicist, Becci Sharpe, via e-mail at beccisharpe [at] atlantic-books.co.uk.
There’s an interview up with David Wingrove on The Scotsman about Son of Heaven. Cook up some haggis, throw on that kilt, [insert another lame Scottish stereotype here], and follow the link below to check out the article.
A Great Wheel Turning is Mr. Wingrove’s primer to the original series and some of its over-arching themes. Those new to the series are advised that not much of this will make sense for another several books. There are some serious spoilers herein, so newcomers are advised to skip it. Veterans are sure to appreciate. Full text after the break…
Flames Dancing in a Glass chronicles Mr. Wingrove’s reflections regarding the inception of the Chung Kuo franchise. Full text, OCR-proofed for the first time on the web, after the break…
Spoiler Alert – The section contains details about Part 3 of Son of Heaven.
Some brief thoughts on Part 3, after the break…