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Travelers' Tales China: True Stories (Travelers' Tales Guides) [Paperback]

By James O'Reilly (Editor), Larry Habegger (Editor) & Sean O'Reilly (Editor)
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Item description for Travelers' Tales China: True Stories (Travelers' Tales Guides) by James O'Reilly, Larry Habegger & Sean O'Reilly...

Travelers' Tales China brings travelers --- armchair or actual --- a breadth and depth of experience from both new and well-known authors that will help make the China experience unforgettable and transforming. These pages cover 6,000 years of history up to modern-day socialist China, from the Silk Road to the high-tech center of Beijing. Explore the old as well as the new --- from the tombs of dead emperors to the world's largest dam. The vastness of the Gobi Desert, the darkness of the assault on Nanking, the upheavals of the Cultural Revolution, and the 700 nature preserves in a country that boasts more wildlife than any other in the world --- these are just a few of the subjects in this literate, lively book.

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Item Specifications...

Pages   312
Est. Packaging Dimensions:   Length: 1" Width: 5.25" Height: 8"
Weight:   0.88 lbs.
Binding  Softcover
Release Date   Jun 29, 2004
Publisher   Travelers' Tales
ISBN  1932361073  
ISBN13  9781932361070  

Availability  0 units.

More About James O'Reilly, Larry Habegger & Sean O'Reilly

Register your artisan biography and upload your photo! O'Reilly is president and co-publisher of Traveler's Tales. He graduated from Dartmouth College in 1975.

James O'Reilly currently resides in Palo Alto, in the state of California. James O'Reilly was born in 1953.

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Product Categories

1Books > Subjects > Reference > Writing > Travel Writing
2Books > Subjects > Travel > Asia > China > General
3Books > Subjects > Travel > General > Essays & Travelogues
4Books > Subjects > Travel > General > Guidebooks

Reviews - What do customers think about Travelers' Tales China: True Stories (Travelers' Tales Guides)?

Says a lot by saying little  Apr 30, 2006
What is China? Reduced to facts and figures, China is amazing and overwhelming. 1.3 billion people live within its borders. Almost 4 million square miles in area. A history stretching back countless millennia. A modern history filled with catchphrases and people with instant recognition: Mao, Tiananmen, Cultural Revolution, Deng Xiaoping. Its economic and political system defy conventional analysis--a totalitarian, self-proclaimed Communist state increasingly open to market capitalism. Hundreds, perhaps even thousands, of books have been written on China ... travelogues, fiction and non-fiction about its history, its culture both modern and ancient. Yet, despite all the numbers and facts, the "real" China seems quite distant. The question remains: What is China?

Travelers' Tales China takes a different approach. Rather than tackling China at the macro-level (an impossible task), it attempts to portray China through a mosaic of stories, some quite mundane, some quite profound; all wonderfully written and vivid in their description and imagery. The writers' perspectives are ideal for the task: as travelers they are confronted by the perpetual travelers' paradox. As the outsider, they are distanced from their subject. Quite often, this detachment is self-imposed, other times it is brought upon by outside forces. However, this detachment is coupled with a curiosity, an eye for detail, a hunger for meaning extended to a degree that would not be sought had they insider status.

Most books on China that I have seen are like a photograph taken on a day with a blinding sun. The subject is blanched by the extreme illumination, shadows are banished, yet the scene is still oddly unclear. Paraphrasing the Dao De Jing, the China that can be told of is not the true China. By attempting to consciously capture China in words, what comes into focus is not the subject but the author. In contrast, the Travelers' Tales is like the scene on its cover. By inviting shadows, allowing ambiguity, and eschewing overt commentary, the book does not describe China--it BECOMES China. Perhaps it is just the "Travelers' China," but even this is a better outcome than most other books I have seen.

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