“The Mysterious Realm of Lop Nur” and “Curse of Kanas Lake”: Xinjiang’s Answer to Tibetan Fiction Fever?

The phenomenal success of He Ma’s The Tibet Code (《藏地密码》, 何马著)—reportedly over 3m volumes sold—has spawned a host of thrillers and mysteries driven by a similar fascination with Tibetan history, religion and relics. The popular 3-volume Tibetan Mastiff (藏獒) by Yang Zhijun (杨治军), now an animated film co-produced by a Sino-Japanese partnership, is just one … Continue reading “The Mysterious Realm of Lop Nur” and “Curse of Kanas Lake”: Xinjiang’s Answer to Tibetan Fiction Fever?

“Champa the Driver”: Tibetan Dreamer in an Alien Land

Original Chinese novel:  《裸命》 English title:  The Unbearable Dreamworld of Champa the Driver Author:   Chan Koonchung (陈冠中) Translator:  Nicky Harman Reviewer:  Bruce Humes  “Dreams are so good. Why do we have to make them a reality? ” What’s a young Tibetan stud to do for a living nowadays in a tourist hotspot like Lhasa? And what … Continue reading “Champa the Driver”: Tibetan Dreamer in an Alien Land

2015 Mao Dun Prize: Who Will Snare Award for Unofficial “Ethnic-themed” Category?

The longlist for what is arguably China’s most prestigious award for novels has just been published (第九届茅盾文学奖参评作品目录). I write “arguably” because, like virtually every literary competition in the PRC of late, even the reputation of the Mao Dun Literature Prize — sponsored by the very official Chinese Writers Association — has been questioned. See 2014: Year of … Continue reading 2015 Mao Dun Prize: Who Will Snare Award for Unofficial “Ethnic-themed” Category?

“The Creation Story”: An Excerpt from “Canticle to the Land,” the Third Novel in Fan Wen’s Yunnan-Tibet Trilogy

The Story of Creation Long, long ago Sky and earth not yet distinct Water and soil not yet formed Darkness shrouding all. No sun, ho! No moon, Neither flower nor beast, ho! And no love. No Tashi Gyatso, Tibetan minstrel, For his wings of passion had yet to unfurl. — Tashi Gyatso’s Creation Ballad The … Continue reading “The Creation Story”: An Excerpt from “Canticle to the Land,” the Third Novel in Fan Wen’s Yunnan-Tibet Trilogy

China’s Richest Authors, the “Tibet Craze” and Silenced Immolations

He Ma (何马) author of the wildly best-selling The Tibet Code (藏地密码), ranks 28th among the Top 30 in the just-released (unofficial) list of China’s Richest Authors (2012 年中国作家富豪榜). Back in mid-2011, I wrote about He Ma’s 10-volume series for Paper Republic (The Tibetan Factor, Marketing Smarts and Toilet Humor): It has hit the shelves … Continue reading China’s Richest Authors, the “Tibet Craze” and Silenced Immolations

Mini-review: Gao Ping’s “Tsangyang Gyatso, The Sixth Dalai Lama “

Leave me to myself. Go away. I have had enough of your demands on me. I didn’t ask for it. What right do you have to make me your Dalai Lama? What right do you have to make me a eunuch, while still leaving my body and passions intact? (From Paul Williams’ The Erotic Verse of the … Continue reading Mini-review: Gao Ping’s “Tsangyang Gyatso, The Sixth Dalai Lama “