- Paperback: 552 pages
- Publisher: University of California Press; Unabridged edition (June 2004)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 0520224787
- ISBN-13: 978-0520224780
- Product Dimensions: 7 x 1.1 x 10 inches
- Shipping Weight: 2.2 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
- Average Customer Review: 220 customer reviews
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #182,430 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Three Kingdoms: A Historical Novel, Part 1 Unabridged Edition
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"By the measure of sheer density of history and drama, all other historical novels suffer by comparison to "Three Kingdoms, the great epic of the Chinese literary tradition. Roberts' rendition of the prose is lively and readable, but his translation of the poetry is a delight, capturing the flavour and pace, and sometimes even the rhyme, of the original."--"National Post (Canadian daily)
Text: English (translation)
Original Language: Chinese --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
Top customer reviews
Better value and translation than the other books that are listed, and you're getting the whole set of books instead of just one or two. I hate that I sound like I'm trying to sell the book, but really this is the best version you can buy unless you learn Chinese and translate it yourself.
This is an awesome epic novel, sweeping the history of Chinese history. All of the characters that are in the Dynasty Series game are here for our further knowledge. Liu Bei, Guan Yu, Zhang Fei, Lu Bu, Cao Cao, Cao Song, Dio Chan, Sun Ce, Sun Quan, Sun Shiang San..... the list goes on and on.
This story written over a thousand years ago, accurately portrays the lives and feelings of these "heroes". The author is a little swayed by the Shu family, and he seems to favor them, portraying Guan Yu, Liu Bei and Zhang Fei as the most loyal and honorable sworn brothers, with Cao Cao a sort of evil madman. But that is okay, since I never liked Cao Cao in the game anyway.
All in all, this is a long and worthwhile read. I would recommend the unabridged version as it is more complete and thorough. You will not be disapointed to see these wonderful characters come to life.
The characters in the book are more alive in the reader's imagination than in the book itself because there isn't much character developement. The book doesn't flow or read smoothly instead it feels almost mechanical. But the events and the actions take a life of it's own in the reader's imagination. I don't know the Chinese language but maybe there were some essence that was lost in the translation.
The events and the strategy that were used in that era of history were brilliant. Even though this happened hundreds of years ago, I have to remind myself these people were not simple, ignorant farmers. Instead they were manipulative, calculating and deceptive as much as, if not more than the politicians that we have now.
Of all the events in the book, what I still remember is how people are killed so easily and at a whim of those in authority. No wonder so many people were in fear of their lives and what they said and did because they were at the mercy of the authority. Another thing I marvelled at was the scale of the wars and battles they had where hundreds of thousands of people would fight and die just because their king wanted ot attack their neighbor.
All said, I would reccommend this book for those who have some interest in China or that era of Chinese history. I give this book 4 out of 5 stars because of the lack of the character developement which would have made this historical novel much more enjoyable and readable.
The only reason I'm giving the series 3 stars instead of 5 is due to the heavy ghosting with the text in the books. All four volumes seem to suffer from ghosted text & it can get really distracting. The text from one side of a page bleeds through very noticeably to the other side which gives me a little bit of a headache when I read for an extended period of time.