Buying Options

Kindle Price: $12.99

Save $4.01 (24%)

These promotions will be applied to this item:

Some promotions may be combined; others are not eligible to be combined with other offers. For details, please see the Terms & Conditions associated with these promotions.

Deliver to your Kindle or other device

Buy for others

Give as a gift or purchase for a team or group.Learn more

Buying and sending eBooks to others

Select quantity
Buy and send eBooks
Recipients can read on any device

Additional gift options are available when buying one eBook at a time.  Learn more

These ebooks can only be redeemed by recipients in the US. Redemption links and eBooks cannot be resold.

This item has a maximum order quantity limit.

Deliver to your Kindle or other device

Kindle App Ad
Loading your book clubs
There was a problem loading your book clubs. Please try again.
Not in a club? Learn more
Amazon book clubs early access

Join or create book clubs

Choose books together

Track your books
Bring your club to Amazon Book Clubs, start a new book club and invite your friends to join, or find a club that’s right for you for free.
The Banished Immortal: A Life of Li Bai (Li Po) by [Ha Jin]
Audible Sample

Follow the Author

Something went wrong. Please try your request again later.

The Banished Immortal: A Life of Li Bai (Li Po) Kindle Edition

4.4 out of 5 stars 84 ratings

See all formats and editions Hide other formats and editions
New from Used from
Great on Kindle
Great Experience. Great Value.
iphone with kindle app
Putting our best book forward
Each Great on Kindle book offers a great reading experience, at a better value than print to keep your wallet happy.

Explore your book, then jump right back to where you left off with Page Flip.

View high quality images that let you zoom in to take a closer look.

Enjoy features only possible in digital – start reading right away, carry your library with you, adjust the font, create shareable notes and highlights, and more.

Discover additional details about the events, people, and places in your book, with Wikipedia integration.

Get the free Kindle app: Link to the kindle app page Link to the kindle app page
Enjoy a great reading experience when you buy the Kindle edition of this book. Learn more about Great on Kindle, available in select categories.

Enter your mobile number or email address below and we'll send you a link to download the free Kindle App. Then you can start reading Kindle books on your smartphone, tablet, or computer - no Kindle device required.

  • Apple
  • Android
  • Windows Phone
    Windows Phone
  • Click here to download from Amazon appstore

To get the free app, enter your mobile phone number.

Amazon Business: Make the most of your Amazon Business account with exclusive tools and savings. Login nowAmazon Business : For business-only pricing, quantity discounts and FREE Shipping. Register a free business account

Editorial Reviews


“Ha Jin narrates the poet’s unusual life with erudition and empathy . . . The Banished Immortal is a biography, but it is also a document in which a rootless writer nods to the past inside him . . . A close reading suggests that it is a return to his early themes, and a tribute to the poet he was before making his mark as a novelist. In some ways, the banished poet’s life even mirrors the biographer’s . . . Writing about Li Bai—his life, his work, and his country—Jin finally returns home.” —Han Zhang, The New Yorker

“The Tang-dynasty poet Li Bai, one of the most revered figures in Chinese literature, was torn between his ambition to become a great statesman and his Daoist aspiration to live a hermetic life. In this biography, the novelist Ha Jin tells Li’s story with insight and empathy. Born in 701, the son of a merchant, Li spent his life travelling in search of patrons to sponsor his political career and divine beings to help him transcend earthly knowledge. Instead, he met laborers ferrying goods along steep trails, young women waiting years for their betrotheds to return from mercantile expeditions, heroic soldiers stationed in the far north and forgotten by the court. Capturing such intimate longing and pain in his poems secured for Li the immortality denied him by politics and religion.” The New Yorker  (briefly noted)

“Ha Jin’s masterful style and deep affection for his subject make the book a pleasure to read—especially for those unfamiliar with Li Bai or Chinese poetry in general . . . The Banished Immortal liberally quotes Bai’s work, sometimes reproducing complete poems in translation to show the depth of his imagery and style. A number of readers will pick up this book knowing its author but not Li Bai, and Ha Jin makes sure they see Bai’s prodigious talent. Newcomers will be swept up in Bai’s personal history while fans of his work will enjoy Ha Jin’s own take on the man and his influence.” Shelf Awareness (starred review) 

“In China Li Po remains the bard of the land, if not the world—a most recognizable global brand, second only, perhaps, to Confucius. As with any cultural icon, beneath the shining veneer must lie untold stories, apocryphal or otherwise. In The Banished Immortal: A Life of Li Bai (Li Po), the National Book Award-winning author Ha Jin has excavated historical records and examined existing biographies, both in Chinese and English, to produce a rich, moving and titillating account of the poet’s life. . . . The Banished Immortal is a deeply empathetic portrait of a literary genius whose vicissitudes in life—filled with ambitions, frailties, losses and pains—would pale a Shakespearean drama. . . . Today, when power-grabbing politicians look out for themselves rather than the public, as they did in Li Po’s time, poetry has a herculean cleaning job to do. By giving us this mesmerizing biography, Ha Jin, who began his writing career as a poet and whose lucid narrative always contains a touch of poetry, sounds a warning gong for our troubled age.” —Yunte Huang, The Wall Street Journal

“American readers’ Western bias has left the Chinese poet Li Bai less well-known here than in his native land, where he is consid­ered a foundational writer. The Banished Immortal: A Life of Li Bai, a new biography of the poet by au­thor Ha Jin (Waiting, The Boat Rocker), is a worthy corrective and an engaging in­troduction to the po­et’s life and work . . . Considering that Bai (also known as Li Po) lived from 700-762 B.C., a sur­prising amount is known about his life, although much of that informa­tion is shrouded in inconsistencies, myths, and ques­tions with answers that are forever lost to time. Jin does an admira­ble job sorting the wheat from the chaff . . . The Banished Immortal is an affectionate and thoughtful por­trait of a complicated man and a master poet.” —Robert Weibezahl, BookPage
“In Tang dynasty China, a poet could nurture high hopes. Becoming an imperial counselor exercising statecraft wasn’t inconceivable, especially if, like Li Bai (701–62), who is also known in English as Li Po, one had studied swordsmanship and history as well as literature . . . He once wangled a court placement but in less than two years resigned, disappointed at being treated as a writer only, not necessarily of poems; he never became a made man. His life as distinguished poet and fiction writer Ha Jin (The Boat Rocker, 2016) so limpidly relays it was peripatetic rather than domestic, usually away from the family he strove to support. Yet he was an unstaunchable fount of poems of friendship, drinking, dancing, nostalgia, and regret and, what is unusual and particular to him, poems adopting the perspectives of others, including ordinary men and women. Bai still stands, with his friend Du Fu, at the pinnacle of Chinese poetry, and his influence is extensive the world over.” —Ray Olson, Booklist

“Award-winning novelist and poet Jin offers a glimpse into the life of one of China’s most celebrated poets . . . Ha Jin creates a kind of hagiography that is both scholarly and emotionally engaging . . . Essential.” —Herman Sutter, Library Journal (starred review)

“Ha Jin tells the story of how a supreme artist endures the struggles, frailties and losses that are a part of any life—for the genius Li Bai, those pervasive difficulties are compounded, as well as redeemed, by art and the artist’s awareness of his gifts. This is a fluently told story, mysterious yet familiar, tragic yet sometimes comical. Ha Jin is a master storyteller.” —Robert Pinsky

“A taut introduction to the life and poetry of the influential eighth-century Daoist poet . . . Ha Jin's polished biography will give a wider audience access to the politics and beauty of a major Chinese poet. —Publisher's Weekly (starred review)

About the Author

HA JIN left his native China in 1985 to attend Brandeis University. He is the author of eight novels, four story collections, four volumes of poetry, and a book of essays. He has received the National Book Award, two PEN/Faulkner Awards, the PEN/Hemingway Foundation Award, the Asian American Literary Award, and the Flannery O'Connor Award for Short Fiction. In 2014 he was elected to the American Academy of Arts and Letters. He lives in the Boston area and is a professor at the creative writing program at Boston University. --This text refers to the hardcover edition.

Product details

  • ASIN : B07C6T6VRC
  • Publisher : Vintage; Reprint edition (January 15, 2019)
  • Publication date : January 15, 2019
  • Language : English
  • File size : 2748 KB
  • Text-to-Speech : Enabled
  • Enhanced typesetting : Enabled
  • X-Ray : Enabled
  • Word Wise : Enabled
  • Print length : 322 pages
  • Lending : Not Enabled
  • Customer Reviews:
    4.4 out of 5 stars 84 ratings

Customer reviews

4.4 out of 5 stars
4.4 out of 5
84 global ratings
How are ratings calculated?

Top reviews from the United States

Reviewed in the United States on April 2, 2019
Verified Purchase
11 people found this helpful
Report abuse
Reviewed in the United States on May 28, 2019
Verified Purchase
9 people found this helpful
Report abuse
Reviewed in the United States on August 28, 2019
Verified Purchase
8 people found this helpful
Report abuse
Reviewed in the United States on March 4, 2019
Verified Purchase
4 people found this helpful
Report abuse
Reviewed in the United States on January 23, 2019
Verified Purchase
9 people found this helpful
Report abuse
Reviewed in the United States on January 31, 2019
Verified Purchase
7 people found this helpful
Report abuse
Reviewed in the United States on March 27, 2019
Verified Purchase
2 people found this helpful
Report abuse
Reviewed in the United States on May 17, 2019
Verified Purchase
One person found this helpful
Report abuse

Top reviews from other countries

3.0 out of 5 stars Okay...
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on March 3, 2021
Verified Purchase
James B
5.0 out of 5 stars Really well written
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on April 27, 2020
Verified Purchase
3.0 out of 5 stars chinese poet
Reviewed in Canada on May 6, 2019
Verified Purchase
2 people found this helpful
Report abuse
Bryan J. McLean - Lyinghere
5.0 out of 5 stars A Grand Telling for the life of Poet Li Bai
Reviewed in Canada on December 23, 2019
Verified Purchase
Leslie Barclay
4.0 out of 5 stars A detailed and clearly written account of a significant life in a tumultuous time
Reviewed in Canada on January 13, 2020
Verified Purchase