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by Simon Elegant
Download A Floating Life: The Adventures of Li Po: A Historical Novel fb2
Genre Fiction
  • Author:
    Simon Elegant
  • ISBN:
    0880016566
  • ISBN13:
    978-0880016568
  • Genre:
  • Publisher:
    Ecco; 1st Pbk. Ed edition (July 1, 1999)
  • Pages:
    320 pages
  • Subcategory:
    Genre Fiction
  • Language:
  • FB2 format
    1375 kb
  • ePUB format
    1677 kb
  • DJVU format
    1784 kb
  • Rating:
    4.1
  • Votes:
    104
  • Formats:
    txt mbr mbr lit


Simon Elegant takes some liberties with the story, but this is a novel after all, not a history book, so don't expect everything to be totally accurate.

Simon Elegant takes some liberties with the story, but this is a novel after all, not a history book, so don't expect everything to be totally accurate. The writing style is interesting: Simon Elegant uses present tense, third-person omniscience for the "present" time of the story, where Li Po is interacting with a young student who has agreed to write down the poet's story in return for instruction in the classic arts.

Simon Elegant's first fictional work is one of the best historical and/or biographical novels I've ever read! . The legendary Chinese versifier, Li Po, returns in full force in Simon Elegant's wonderful autobiographical fiction.

Simon Elegant's first fictional work is one of the best historical and/or biographical novels I've ever read! Li Po is many things, but bashful is not one of them. He tells his adventurous "life story" to a young boy named Wang Lung, who dutifully copies it down as an excercise in learning to write. Even if you know nothing of the poet, you feel as if you've walked in his shoes. More than 700 years before the Renaissance in Europe, the vagaries of Chinese court life are rendered familiar through a most illustrative life.

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Are you sure you want to remove A Floating Life: The Adventures of Li Po from your list? A Floating Life: The Adventures of Li Po. A Historical Novel. Published July 1, 1999 by Ecco Press.

Thirteen centuries ago, the Chinese poet Li Po pursued life with a ferocious appetite, being both admired for his verse and notorious for his untrammelled behavior at the court of the Emperor Hsuan Tsung and, later, on the loose pursuing his fortune in the T'ang Dynasty-era countryside

I am looking for historical fiction based in India, Thailand, China and Japan. Any help would be great. by Lisa See. Japan: Memoirs of a Geisha by Arthur Golden The Tale of Murasaki: A novel by Liza Dalby.

I am looking for historical fiction based in India, Thailand, China and Japan. Japan: Memoirs of a Geisha by Arthur Golden The Tale of Murasaki: A novel by Liza Dalby (her books are great) The Bonesetters's Daughter by Amy Tan The Moon Lady by Amy Tam and Gretchen Schields Hundred Secret Senses by Amy Tam The Kitchen God's Wife by Amy Tan India: Beneath a Marble Sky by John Shors. the tale of the daughter of the man that. built the Taj Mahal TheFar Pavillions by MM Kaye The Death of Vishnu: A Novel by Manil Suri The Twentieth Wife: A novel by Indu Sundaresan.

View on timesmachine. The Adventures of Li Po. By Simon Elegant.

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Simon Elegant's A Floating Life: the Adventures of Li Po: an Historical Novel is a beautifully written tale that recreates the adventurous, flamboyant. This section contains 292 words (approx. 1 page at 400 words per page). More summaries and resources for teaching or studying The River Merchant's Wife: A Letter. Browse all BookRags Study Guides.

The studious young son of a vintner takes down the life and exploits of Li Po, China's legendary poet, as the poet recalls his outlandish adventures

Black_Hawk_Down.
Simon Elegant's writing has the feel of actually reading the autobiography of an ancient Chinese poet. I studied Chinese in college many, many years ago. Reading this wonderful book was like returning to my studies of Literary Chinese, free of the dictionary. I feel truly grateful to Mr. Elegant for having written this wonderful book.
Fohuginn
Very much enjoyed it, good pace nice structure an wonderful vocabulary. Good job Simon, very elegantly done sir :) :)
Grari
truly a cathartic book,highly recommend it to anyone looking for a novel to read period.
Garr
Unfortunately, the Tang Dynasty remains a focus of very little scholarship in the English language, meaning that many interested readers must turn to a small selection of books about the period. Thankfully, Elegant has written an entertaining and elegant (apologies for the pun) novel which captures the spirit of the age, as well as encompassing much from classic historical works, such as Mark Elvin's Pattern of the Chinese Past, Edward Schafer's The Golden Peaches of Samarkand, and Stephen Owen's The Great Age of Chinese Poetry: The High T'ang. Elegant's writing is at times whimsical and fantastic, at others rich in description of foods, smells, sights and sounds. His artful and subtle combination of elements from these scholarly works brings to life a period much appreciated in China but often inaccessible to Western readers. If only there were more works like this, which can be appreciated by scholars and lay readers, China might seem a less opaque culture. Li Bai/Li Po comes alive in this work, and brings more clarity to his background, his poems, and the tapestry of the Tang Dynasty whereon he lived his life. If you've made it so far to read this review, do yourself a favor, buy the book, and enjoy a feast of the spectacular and appetizing delights of Tang China.
Stanober
As a longtime student of Chinese history, I was intrigued when I came across this book. Chinese history, particularly ancient China, has always fascinated me, and this novel didn't let me down. However, it started out a bit slow, and after 20 pages or so, I almost put it aside for something more interesting. The topic may not appear too exciting at first - the life story of a poet in eighth-century China - and it does have a slow start, but A Floating Life is actually a fun book and quite exciting at times.

Li Po is a real person, and has had a great influence even to this day. When my Chinese-born wife saw what I was reading, she immediately quoted some of Li Po's poetry and told me how he was always drunk. Simon Elegant takes some liberties with the story, but this is a novel after all, not a history book, so don't expect everything to be totally accurate.

The writing style is interesting: Simon Elegant uses present tense, third-person omniscience for the "present" time of the story, where Li Po is interacting with a young student who has agreed to write down the poet's story in return for instruction in the classic arts. Elegant then switches to past tense, first person limited viewpoint as Li Po relates his adventures. The reader is taken back and forth between the present and past and in a few places it's somewhat awkward, causing me to stop and figure out where in the timeline I was. But most of the transitions are smooth, and the present story fits in well with the past, especially as the two stories meet in the end.

As Elegant tries to convey a sense of setting and background, he describes with elegant (sorry :-) ) details the life, customs and culture of the time he is writing about. At first I thought he was really going overboard, just trying to show off his knowledge of the era with all the minute facts he could include, whether or not they added to the story. But the problem with my complaint is, they really do add to the story and hurl the reader back in time to Imperial China.

The book isn't perfect, though, as no book is, and if you're not into historical novels in general and Chinese history in particular, you may not find this too interesting. For example, Elegant spends a whole page or more just describing what the emperor served for dinner. I enjoyed reading that; it reminded me of some fancy banquets I attended while living in Asia. But some readers would just scan through that in an effort to get to the real story.

Also, I still don't see the need for any author to offend the reader with vulgar language. We all know that some people talk like that in real life, but we don't need to read it. It really adds absolutely nothing to the book and in reality, detracts from it. That said, however, I appreciate the fact that Elegant doesn't dwell too long on sex and violence. He lets us know that the world of Li Po was a violent place and briefly mentions some of the brutality, but doesn't disgust the reader with a play-by-play. Ditto on the sex scenes.

Lastly, I don't know if Elegant has downloaded a dictionary into his brain or what, but he sure uses some obscure language in places. I didn't mind that, but I had to keep a dictionary handy to look up some of the words.
Qwne
Anything written from the Zhuangzi/Daoist point of view, from Lin Yutang's 'Moment in Peking' on down the sadly short list, shows an entirely different portrait of China than we are used to seeing. Amid the conformity, an eccentric; amid the tradition, a progressive; amid the acquiescence, a rebel; amid the herd, an individual. The tide never has, and probably never will, turn, but it is nice to know that there will always be those willing to swim joyously against it.
Li Po, or Li Bai as he is called in standard Mandarin, is one of those rare such characters in Chinese history, and Simon Elegant brings him convincingly to life, a man of flesh and blood and spirit.
I know little of Li Bai; here in China he is much memorialized but less remembered, so the tales in "Floating Life" are as much as I know about the mythology beyond the repute of the poems. I'm sure Elegant did his research, though, and it makes for an engaging tale.
The device of the acolyte/narrator is awkward at times, and the breaks away from Li Bai's voice cause the book's progression to stumble, but it does allow the tale to be told in first person and without overly rigorous chronology. Li Bai's tales, told through his perspective, witty and insightful, are what make the book.
And the book does justice to Li Bai's poetry and ethic. Reading it, one gets lost in the quiet moment, as if downing a bowl of warm Huangjiu in a boat on the West Lake at dusk. Simple, sublime. Li Bai did many things, and is enshrined in the catacombs of history, but what matters is that he knew how to be happy, how to live in the moment.