It was 1994 when Xinran, a journalist and the author of The Good Women of China, received a telephone call asking her to travel four hours to meet an oddly dressed woman who had just crossed the border from Tibet into China. Xinran made the trip and met the woman, called Shu Wen, who recounted the story of her thirty-year odyssey in the vast landscape of Tibet.
Shu Wen and her husband had been married for only a few
months in the 1950s when he joined the Chinese army and was sent to
Tibet for the purpose of unification of the two countries. Shortly after
he left she was notified that he had been killed, although no details
were given. Determined to find the truth, Shu Wen joined a militia unit
going to the Tibetan north, where she soon was separated from the
regiment. Without supplies and knowledge of the language, she wandered,
trying to find her way until, on the brink of death, she was rescued by a
family of nomads under whose protection she moved from place to place
with the seasons and eventually came to discover the details of her
In the haunting Sky Burial, Xinran has recreated Shu
Wen’s journey, writing beautifully and simply of the silence and the
emptiness in which Shu Wen was enveloped. The book is an extraordinary
portrait of a woman and a land, each at the mercy of fate and politics.
It is an unforgettable, ultimately uplifting tale of love loss, loyalty,
and survival. From Goodreads.
I enjoyed this book, it gives an insight into Tibetan culture. Shu Wen seems like a strong woman and struggles to turn from a Chinese city woman into a Tibetan Nomad woman while searching for her husband.
This book qualifies for:
2014 Quick fix Challenge (173 pages)
I Love Library Books Reading Challenge 2014
2014 Literary Exploration Reading Challenge (Auto-Biography/Biography)
2014 Full House Reading Challenge (from the local library)
2014 Women Challenge
CCC A-Z Authors 2014
You Read How Many Books? Reading Challenge 2014
The Challenge Factory Spell It Out - Supercalifragilisticexpialidocious (X)
Goodreads Reading Challenge 2014
Author Alphabet Reading Challenge
Nothing but Reading Challenges - Spell it Out - Animal Alphabet (X-fox)
CCC-Read your age (first published 2004)
Bout of Books 9.0