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"Funny, childlike and wise all at once."
- Los Angeles Times
"What makes this novel winsome is hearing the authentic voice of a young woman — bewildered, self-deprecating, funny, wise — as she navigates the world on her own.”
- USA Today
"A young woman from rural China learns how to comprehend love and heartbreak in English in this quirky, touching novel. Zhuang, or Z to tongue-tied foreigners, arrives in London at age 23 after being dispatched by her parents to get an education. Her immersion and painful education are laid bare to readers, who witness Z's vocabulary, grammar and understanding blossom throughout her diarylike account, sped along by an intense romance with a man met at the cinema. Her consuming love begins promisingly, but her failure to interpret her lover's lifestyle as a hippie drifter (who's 20 years her senior) alerts readers to potential trouble in paradise, even while such a notion remains beyond Z's not-yet-jaded imagination. The novel overflows with gentle jokes about culture shock and language barriers including Z's inability to understand why Brits bother talking about the weather when it's obvious—but there are deeper observations beneath the humor. Z's comically earnest exploration of a sex shop illuminates the pathos of Western seediness, and her encounters with men reveal both the exploitative and meaningful sides of romance. Z's unique, evolving voice fits perfectly for a heroine whose naïveté is matched by a willingness to relay the truth."
- Publishers Weekly (US)
Very favourable reviews on Amazon.com.
The cost of shipping is $4.95.
There is of course no charge for shipping if you collect this book from my shop in Palmerston North following the auction.
Payment within seven days, please.