Monday, January 3, 2011

Guest Blog - A Comrade Lost and Found: A Beijing Memoir by Jan Wong

Several years ago I heard an interview with Jan Wong on the radio and became interested in finding out what happened to the comrade whom she betrayed while she was a student in Beijing. However, it was a long time before I came across a copy of her book A Comrade Lost and Found: A Beijing Memoir. In a couple of libraries the copy was missing.

In early December I had the chance to read the book. Note that I have not read Red China Blues. Both books are biographical. I found the experiences and the glimpse of Beijing in the pre-Olympic years interesting. Not to give away too much to those of you who might read this book - when by a series of chance encounters, Wong does find her fellow student, the resolution is so simple that I am disappointed in myself that it did not cross my mind.

I have not felt spurred on to check out Red China Blues even though it is presumably a good account of the tragedy at Tiananmen Square. Do I really want to know? However, I enjoyed this glimpse into Beijing during and after the Cultural Revolution. I could do worse than to take a bit of time to learn more about this rapidly emerging power. I have to admit that the mysteries written by Lisa See are more up my alley, square, sidestreet....

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