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.
To get the free app, enter your mobile phone number.
Other Sellers on Amazon
Living Treasures Paperback – October 23, 2014
|New from||Used from|
Customers who bought this item also bought
From School Library Journal
Gr 10 Up—Eighteen-year-old Gu Bao is a law student at Nanjing University in the summer of 1989, during the Tiananmen Square protests and the ensuing political unrest. Despite the school's strict rules against dating and sex, Bao and her boyfriend Tong decide to sleep together. Bao becomes pregnant and is promptly taken to her grandparents' remote village for an abortion. While seeking solace in the woods to mourn the loss of her unborn "Soybean," Bao befriends a woman named Orchid who, in defiance of the country's one-child policy, is hiding until she can give birth to her second baby. Bao forms a relationship with Orchid and her family, becoming deeply involved in working to ensure the safety of the unborn child. The use of metaphor and symbolism is strong throughout the story, with many images of babies, mothers, and the visceral realities of life and survival. The theme of women's bodies not always being their own is prominent. The richly detailed expository descriptions tend to overpower the stilted dialogue, which makes the tone feel uneven and the characters difficult to become invested in. The slow pace and specific cultural setting may make this a hard sell for teen readers. For where William Bell's Forbidden City (Seal, 1990) is still popular.—Whitney LeBlanc, Staten Island Academy, NY
San Jose Mercury News:
"Gu Bao negotiates the shifting landscape of a country still struggling toward modernity, as China's education system, family planning policies and the deaths of her fellow students. . . push her to desperate measures. The story moves from city life to the rural home of Bao's grandparents, acquiring an epic feel in a compact length."
San Francisco Book Review:
"Huang's winning novel is more than another work of historical fiction. Living Treasures is endearing, extraordinarily moving, and its timely message about life makes it a must read for young and old readers alike."
Midwest Book Review:
"Living Treasures is nothing short of spectacular; especially for readers who want a story steeped in Chinese culture, tradition, and politics but cemented by a powerful young woman who emerges as a savior to others."
"Huang does an admirable job balancing Bao's individual story against the canvas of China's evolution using crisply drawn characters who reveal their layers as the story progresses. A knotty, engaging novel of China's recent history."
Asian American Literature Fans:
"The perils of Chinese motherhood in all of its contemporary manifestations."
"Living Treasures expands into a deeply human and sympathetic portrait of people living as best they can in an imperfect society."
"Huang's measured yet evocative novel heightens Bao's journey from timid student to defiant adversary in the midst of personal and political upheaval."
"This skillfully written work embodies a young woman's journey toward independence and maturity at a time when her country's politics dictate conformity and oppression. . . . Reminiscent of Yu Hua's To Live but with a lot less tragedy and heartbreak."
The Ocean Observer:
"All of the characters are rich and complex. . . . The theme is love and it circles round and back to it again and again."
Bea Dong, Eastwind Books of Berkeley:
"The universal story of women choosing their path, love, and control of life and body. . . . A poignant, touching story that brings more understanding of the lives of China's people."
Books and Movies: Reviews
"I recommend this book to the permanent library of all readers who enjoy a very well written work of fiction, on a very timely subject, that will keep them entertained for hours."
Jiayu Jeng, KTSF Channel 26 Talk Tonight host
"Living Treasures is a book that breaks your heart, and then mends it with hope. Best book I've read this year."
Patricia Harman, author of The Midwife of Hope River:
"Living Treasures is a treasure. Sensual, brave and relevant, the book takes you to a place in China that few of us have ever experienced. I couldn't put it down."
Bill Wolfe, Read Her Like an Open Book:
"With the national, political, and cultural setting involved here, this would be a thought-provoking read for high school students."
Top customer reviews
There was a problem filtering reviews right now. Please try again later.
Against the dire circumstance of repressions and injustices in China, the author still holds her hope high for a fairer China. A fatalist would have given up long time ago. “It’s Chinatown”, as one sensible guy once advised Jack Nicholson. The survivor instinct kicks in and many would just walk away from it. Yang Huang wants none of it. She is an optimist.
social change in China during the time of political turmoil at Tiananmen Square, each character in this
amazing tale seems so familiar that I feel I know them all, such is the skill of the author.
I wish to now see the countryside through which the heroine, 'Bao' moved, a landscape so engagingly described
in perfect counterpoint to the strife born by those suffering the vicissitudes of political and social oppression.
“It’s a rather common occurrence, [like eating] an ordinary kind of food. There’s nothing worth talking about.”
Yang Huang, a Chinese author, showed us how harsh the situation in the rural areas in China was when the one-child policy established by the government, in her debut book, Living Treasures . Living Treasures was a Bellwether Prize finalist, which is a strong historical novel set in China against the one-child policy.
Set in China during the tumultuous Tiananmen Square protest in 1989, Living Treasures portrays the crusade of Gu Bao, a girl who grows up under the Chinese government’s one-child policy. The Chinese government has enforced strict controls to keep the country from environmental destitution and poverty ever since Mao’s ban on family planning left China a legacy of 1.1 billion people, 20% of the population on earth.
Bao searches for her inner strength while exploring the Sichuan mountain landscape. She befriends a panda mother caught in a poacher’s snare, and an expectant young mother hiding from villainous one-child policy enforcers bent on giving compulsory abortions. All struggle against society to preserve the treasure of their little ones. Bao devises a daring plan that changes the lives of everyone around her. Will Bao earn a second chance to save a family from destruction? What price will Bao pay to prevent a full-term abortion and save a panda cub?
18-year old Gu Bao's life, who is a first-year law student changes drastically on June 1989 when a student demonstration against the government in Tiananmen Square goes out of control. However, she herself was not present in the demonstration, but on that very day, Gu Bao falls pregnant with her young soldier lover. Following which Gu Boa's parents forced her to abort the child by brainwashing her. Gu Bao went to her grandparent’s village, where she grew up, to have the procedure. It is where Gu Bao realizes the harsh condition of expectant mothers, forced to abort their child by the one-child policy enforcers. Gu Bao jumps to rescue a young expecting mother who went into hiding in the woods, even if she has to sacrifice her own ability to become a mother.
Gu Bao is a brave and strong-willed character. I never came across a woman like who would jump into fire just to save another's. Moreover, Gu Bao's demeanor astounded me when her parents forced to abort her own child. She did not even utter a word for her defense. She simply obliged.
What is astonishing is that this story's backdrop is actually set on a poignant love story whose strings will pull you deeper into the core of this heart-touching story. Though the relationship was highly forbidden on the face of Bao's parents, teachers and law, still their blossoming, passionate chemistry will fill you up with warmth. Not only has that Huang skillfully interwoven various issues faced by a young unmarried woman back in 1989 in China. It seems Huang used the notion of China's national treasure- Giant Panda, metaphorically to contrast the stark in-differences faced by an expecting woman and the mother Panda trying to nourish her cub.
Yang Huang intricately detailed and delicately captured the bright landscapes, culture, superstitions, heritage, sights, and sounds of Pingwu County countryside and the city of Nanjing. Reading which will completely transport your mind and soul into the forbidden lands of China. From the very first page, I felt that very essence of China that drew my senses as well as my heart into the very core of the story.
The third-person narration is lyrical yet literary and flows like a free-flowing river. Living Treasures is a gripping and extraordinary historical and cultural novel that declares author Yang Huang as a talented, master storyteller.
Verdict: This historically as well as culturally-rich novel set in China will only swoon your heart and mind.