Bridge of Birds is a lyrical fantasy novel. Set in "an Ancient China that never was", it stands with The Princess Bride and The Last Unicorn as a fairy tale for all ages, by turns incredibly funny and deeply touching. It won the World Fantasy Award in 1985, and Hughart produced two sequels: The Story of the Stone, and Eight Skilled Gentlemen. All present the adventures of Master Kao Li, a scholar with "a slight flaw in [his] character", and Lu Yu, usually called Number Ten Ox, his sidekick and the story's narrator. Number Ten Ox is strong, trusting, and pure of heart; Master Li once sold an emperor shares in a mustard mine, because "I was trying to win a bet concerning the intelligence of emperors."
Number Ten Ox comes from a village in which the children have been struck by a mysterious illness. He recruits Master Li to find the cure and comes along to provide muscle. They seek a mysterious Great Root of Power, which may be a form of ginseng. Of course, nothing turns out to be as simple as it seems; great wrongs must be avenged and lovers separated must be reunited, from the most humble to the highest. And even in the midst of cosmic glory, Pawnbroker Fang and Ma the Grub are picking the pockets of their own lynch mob, who are frozen in awe and wonder. --Nona Vero
When the children of his village were struck with a mysterious illness, Number Ten Ox found master Li Kao. Together they set out to find the Great Root of Power, the only possible cure, and together they discover adventure and legend, and the power of belief....
Cannot recommend this highly enough. It's a mix of *Sherlock Holmes*, Chinese opera, Conan the Barbarian, and a big dash of humor. Read morePublished 15 days ago by Melissa Whitcomb
The series was great an I was exceptionally happy to add it to my collection.Published 26 days ago by Allen Crotty
A well-deserved winner of the World Fantasy Award. I found it utterly charming: equal parts detective story, caper story, and coming-of age, lovingly and artfully told. Read morePublished 1 month ago by A. Rainey
Tongue-in-cheek fantasy set in ancient China. Must have sense of humor to enjoy this book. Great book to read aloud with a loved one if you like to laugh together!Published 2 months ago by Mary
One of my favorites. Holds an esteemed place on my bookshelf.Published 2 months ago by Leonard Tollerton
Holmes and Watson with a "small flaw in his character". This book is a romp through an ancient China that never existed with characters that might have. Read morePublished 2 months ago by Malcolm Tente
This book had a very strong stylistic feel to it. This was entertaining at first, but eventually the novelty of such a strong style wore off, and I found the plot to be lacking... Read morePublished 2 months ago by BookWyrm