This book is a finalist for the Man Booker International Prize.
Deep within the Balou mountains lies a small rural town populated by disabled people.
Blind, deaf and disfigured, the 197 citizens of the Village of Liven have until now enjoyed a peaceful, mutually supportive life out of sight and mind of the government.
But when an unseasonal snowstorm wipes out that year's crops, a county official dreams up a scheme that will raise money for the district and boost his career.
He convinces the villagers to set up a travelling freak-show, to include Blind Tonghua's Acute Listening Act and Deafman Ma's Firecrackers-on-the-Ear.
With the money, he intends to buy Lenin's embalmed corpse from an ailing Russia and install it in a splendid mausoleum in the mountains to attract tourism to this sleepy district.
However, as we all know, even the best intentions can go awry.
- Format: Paperback
- Pages: 512 pages
- Publisher: Vintage Publishing
- Publication Date: 03/10/2013
- Category: Modern & contemporary fiction (post c 1945)
- ISBN: 9780099569480