20 Fragments of a Ravenous Youth by Xiaolu Guo

By Xiaolu Guo

The most recent novel from Orange Prize finalist Xiaolu Guo is the enchantingly funny story of a tender chinese language woman's existence as a movie additional in hyper-modern, tumultuous Beijing.Though twenty-one-year-old Fenfang Wang has traveled 1,800 miles to hunt her fortune in city Beijing, she is ill-prepared for what greets her: a Communist regime that has outworn its welcome, a urban in slap-dash improvement, and a sexist angle extra in line with her peasant upbringing than the country's innovative capital. yet after learning the fever and tumult of the town, Fenfang finally reveals her actual independence within the one position she by no means anticipated.

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And I took a 'Crazy English' course, where they believed that you could master English by shouting very loudly. I enrolled in a Wubi typing course where you had to speed-type Chinese characters on an English keyboard. I even took a theory course for those learning to drive, though I didn't have a car and was totally confused by Beijing's maze of highways and flyovers. Still, I was determined to become a real Beijinger, whatever it took. Up until I met Xiaolin, all the money I was earning went towards my re-education.

UFO instant noodles. My heart jumped a little – I remembered UFO instant noodles. I remembered, but what from? Who from? It was either Xiaolin or Ben. ' But which one? I couldn't remember. Fuck. Xiaolin or Ben? I knew it was one of them, and that it was said in bed, in the dark depths of a winter's night, when we were both starving and all the shops were closed. But who the fuck was it? UFO instant noodles. UFO instant noodles. Heavenly Bastard in the Sky, I'd have given away all my best DVDs if only I could have remembered.

No one cared how they lived, how they died, whether they had joy or sadness. Maybe that's why they grew so tall, stubbornly trying to reach the bright sun. My hair was stubborn like they were, strong for no purpose. I sat by the well and poured water on my hair, to prevent my body from combusting in the dizzying heat. I looked towards the yard where my mother sat with other middle-aged women... mothers, mothers-in-law, aunties, sisters. I couldn't quite make her out, but I knew where she was: she always sat in the same spot.

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