Mr Muo's Travelling Couch

by Dai Sijie

A comic novel following the misadventures of a naive, idealistic Chinese psychiatrist on his quest to free his college sweetheart now a political prisoner. A surreal slapstick farce, with an unbelievable plot that will not appeal to everyone's taste. If you want to experiment with something different, try this for an unusual read.


Sprawled on the black and white tiles, Muo is aware of the judge making for the door and vanishing into the night. He loses track of time. Coming to his senses at last, he assesses the damage: his face is bloodied like that of the hero in a Western, and his trousers are sopping wet like the Russian director's in the Kremlin projection room.
'Not bad, Muo,' he says to himself, 'here you are, the two global superpowers united within you.'
Translated by Ina Rilke


Waiting by Ha Jin

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