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.
The Story of the Stone, or The Dream of the Red Chamber, Vol. 5: The Dreamer Wakes Paperback – December 2, 1986
|New from||Used from|
The Amazon Book Review
Discover what to read next through the Amazon Book Review. Learn more.
Frequently Bought Together
From the Back Cover
About the Author
Top Customer Reviews
You cannot find any better example of novel-writing skill in any language.
You get some closure--the story draws to an end and homage is paid to the theological theme of realizing the primacy of the spiritual world over the material world. I don't want to give any spoilers, but I will say that you are expecting a fall from grace with a stalwart conviction that life isn't over--a Chinese version of the Book of Job--but you get a lot of deus ex machina events that give it more of a fairy tale ending than what Cao Xueqin hinted at throughout the first three volumes.
I read the original Chinese version of this book when I was in high school, many years ago. At that time, my impression was that it was a Chinese Romeo and Juliet type tragic love story, in which the main characters Bao-yu and his cousin Dai-yu (Black Jade) suffered the fate of unfulfilled love, and no ever after. There was more to it than that, but I could not figure out what.
Recently, I re-read the book (the current trans- lated version). This time it sounded like the Adven- tures of Tom Jones, in which the teen-aged playboy Bao-yu was dallying in the ranks of the female members of his household (his cousins and maids), longing after many but only truly loving Dai-yu.
It was also a bit similar to Upstairs Downstairs -- a big noble clan with all its ladies, young misses and maids, and their lives of adventures and tears. But something was still missing. There was a theme, a message, which draws me and others to this great work of literature.
I finally figured it out: Almost all the WOMEN in this book were described as elegant, sophisticated, intelligent, graceful, excellent decision makers, and above all, beautiful. Most MEN, however, were described as fools, red-necks, unfaithful, heart-breakers, nogooders, users of prostitutes and abusers of power!
What I am looking at is a book (or one-MAN crusade) of Early Feminism. It is all the more remarkable because in feudal China, women did not have equal status. "marrying for love" seldom existed. It was more like "married by parental arrangement".Read more ›
The most salient comment on the problem may be the one offered by John Minford when he writes that regardless of academic debates, these chapters are what we have, and they "have been accepted as *the* ending for centuries." Minford's translation continues to be a worthy successor to David Hawkes' version of the first 80 chapters, and I found this last volume to be more satisfying than I had often heard.
At this point, recommendations are all but moot; no one should be starting the story here, and if you've come this far there's no good reason not to read the last 400 pages.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
This is the fifth and final installment in the classic Chinese story. It gives a feel for cultural history of the Chinese people.Published 4 months ago by Kayke Clark
I read all 5 volumes of this translation of the 18th Century Chinese novel known as The Story of the Stone or The Dream of the Red Chamber. Read morePublished on March 23, 2013 by Greg Reeder
Read it for a literature class in college. Interesting story, would recommend. This is book 5 of a 5 book set. Each book has 24 chapters.Published on September 21, 2012 by R J Chen
I really enjoyed this book, a part of my self-directed curriculum to understand China (all of which, by the way, has been incredible). Read morePublished on November 20, 2007 by D. Moore