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Dream of the Dragon Pool [Paperback]

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Item description for Dream of the Dragon Pool by Albert A. Dalia...

Dream of the Dragon Pool A Daoist Quest is a multifaceted novel woven around the historical fact of the death-sentence exile of China s best loved poet-adventurer, Li Bo (also Li Bai, 701-762 A.D.). This is an adventure story of magic, myth, and occult powers written as traditional Chinese-style wu-xia (heroic) fiction.

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Item Specifications...

Pages   335
Est. Packaging Dimensions:   Length: 0.75" Width: 5.5" Height: 8.5"
Weight:   0.98 lbs.
Binding  Softcover
Release Date   May 1, 2007
Publisher   Pleasure Boat Studio: A Literary Press
ISBN  1929355343  
ISBN13  9781929355341  

Availability  0 units.

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Product Categories

1Books > Subjects > Science Fiction & Fantasy > Fantasy > Epic
2Books > Subjects > Science Fiction & Fantasy > Fantasy > General
3Books > Subjects > Science Fiction & Fantasy > Fantasy > Historical
4Books > Subjects > Science Fiction & Fantasy > Science Fiction > Alternate History

Reviews - What do customers think about Dream of the Dragon Pool?

A few oddities, though...  Jan 14, 2008
1. Peanuts are eaten frequently in the drinking scenes of this book, but their appearance here is an anachronism. Peanuts were not known in China during the Tang Dynasty. They were not introduced into China until about 1,000 years later, in the 1600s by Portuguese traders, and another variety in the 1800s by American missionaries. Peanuts were first domesticated in Peru, and were unknown in Europe, Asia, and Africa until the Age of Discovery. Of course currently China may very well be the world's leading producer of peanuts.

2. "Incensor" is a real word, but it's not a container for incense. According to the OED, "incensor" is an obsolete word meaning a person who inflames or incites other people. There is an appliance for burning incense called a "censer" (-er, NOT -or), but the word "incensor" meaning a container for burning incense appears to be an invention of the author.

If you like Jedi you'll like wuxia  Jan 8, 2008
This is my wife's account, my name is Dawud.

I bought this book because I'm interested in wuxia literature after having been into wuxia films and comics for years. I'd never read a wuxia novel all the way through before. Most of those I knew about don't have English translations and are subject to gradual fan translations online. So when I heard of Mr Dalia's work I was eagerly anticipating it. I was not in the least disappointed.

I'm a huge Star Wars fan, and I've been reading Star Wars novels for the last 14 years and in recent years I've been really noting the similarities between Star Wars and wuxia ever since I became interested in wuxia. So Star Wars novels were a good introduction for me into this genre I'd say, and reading Dream of the Dragon Pool was like putting on familiar clothing with a different design and maybe a bit more vintage.

Dream of the Dragon Pool really drives home for me how wuxia Star Wars is, especially when it comes to the use of chi in the martial arts. The first time Wang Ah Wu uses his chi to boost his awareness of his surroundings I was reminded of the way Jedi are written to use the Force for the same thing. This book is a must read for Star Wars fans. I also highly recommend it to anyone interested in wuxia fiction in general... and people who have an interest in Chinese culture and martial arts.
a dream of ancient china  Jan 1, 2008
To treat a set of ideas or beliefs as more that just a set of ideas or beliefs is difficult. This is especially so when the beliefs in question are not part of one's own cultural heritage. There is both considerable skill in the writing and considerable knowledge used as background necessary to pull something like this off. Albert Dalia succeeds on both counts. The story, although strange from a Westerner's point of view, moves through its changes smoothly, interestedly, and, perhaps more to the point, believably. Granted, this tale involves the "willing suspension of disbelief," but, that done, it is a good story well told, and well worth the read.
Wicked and nefarious enemies and wondrous adventure flow from this exotic and utterly enthralling tale.  Nov 4, 2007

Written by Albert A. Dalia, a scholar of medieval Chinese history and culture for four decades, Dream of the Dragon Pool: A Daoist Quest is an amazing novel based on the historical death-sentence exile of China's beloved poet-adventurer Li Bo (also Li Bai, 701-762 A.D.). A fanciful tale of myth and wonder, told as traditional Chinese-style heroic fiction, Dream of the Dragon Pool follows Li Bo on his journey toward certain death in faraway Burma/Myanmar. Unconcerned about the threat of his imminent demise, Li Bo sees his travels as a quest for poetic inspiration. Along the way he befriends the emperor's most powerful shamaness, accidentally awakens the horrific Blood Dragon and its ghostly slaves, and stumbles into possession of the coveted and legendary Dragon Pool Sword after a dream visit from a Daoist Immortal. Wicked and nefarious enemies and wondrous adventure flow from this exotic and utterly enthralling tale.
A wonderful and engrossing blend of fantasy and Chinese mythology   Aug 1, 2007
Dream of the Dragon Pool: A Daoist Quest, Albert A. Dalia's impressive debut novel, presents readers with a magical blend of fantasy, history, and Chinese mythology. Western literature has only just begun to tap into the wellspring of Far Eastern tradition and mythology, especially China's "tales of wonder," which seem almost tailor-made for the fantasy genre, but Albert A. Dalia has already drunk deeply from its refreshing waters. Don't let that word "Daoist" scare you off; I couldn't have told you what it meant, either - although I do know there is absolutely nothing "simplistic" about it or this novel. Heck, we're talking about universal concepts of existence here, mixing it up with profound insights into the very essence of life and dancing around enlightenment itself.

Dalia builds his story around Li Bo (or Li Bai), one of China's most celebrated poets. History tells us that Li Bo, who lived in the 8th century, got himself exiled from the imperial court, then likely perished in the Yangtze River soon afterward. Dalia's fantasy begins where history ends, introducing readers to Li Bo and his faithful warrior companion Ah Wu as they set out along the Yangtze River on their way to Li Bo's probable death in the dangerous land of his exile. The possibility of impending death doesn't bother Li Bo too much, though, for he is much more concerned with finding the poetic muse that will reawaken the inner poetry he has lost. Whatever inner magic helped him conjure up such immortal poems as Drinking Alone by Midnight is now gone. That is why he makes a point of visiting the mysterious Dragon Pool Temple along the way; the next morning, he leaves the place with the famed Dragon Pool Sword and a mission to deliver it to the Rain Goddess on her sacred mountain. Ah Wu considers the sword dangerous, but Li Bo is determined to fulfill his new, sacred quest.

The men soon meet a fellow traveler and his ghost-catching, alcohol-loving monkey (yes, you read that correctly) both of whom can be good to have around when danger beckons, which it does in the form of an assassin capable of killing people within their very own dreams and a Blood Dragon anxious to get her hands on the unmatched sword. Throw in the emperor's favorite shamaness attempting to flee to the Rain Goddess' sacred mountain, as well, and you've got yourself quite an engrossing adventure. The emotional heart of the story, though, is Chen, the ghost of a young woman. Bound to do the will of the Blood Dragon, she must befriend and betray Li Bo (whose true identity is unknown to her) against her will; what makes her struggle all the more poignant is the fact that her only remaining solace in her ghostly life is Li Bo's poetry.

There is plenty of action and excitement, on both land and sea, as Li Bo attempts to fulfill his quest and deliver the Dragon Pool Sword to the Rain Goddess on Mount Wu. All of the characters are wonderfully developed, while the backdrop of this ancient land and time makes for a wonderfully exotic setting for such a fantastic tale. As a long-time scholar of medieval Chinese history, Dalia really knows this long-ago world he is recreating and brings it vividly to life. If you're a fantasy fan looking for something a little different, or someone with an interest in Chinese history and mythology, or if you just appreciate a well-written novel, you'll want to undertake this Daoist quest alongside the great poet Li Bo. Dream of the Dragon Pool is a wonderfully engaging novel.

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