In these twelve stories, we see the astonishing range of Mo Yan's vision - which critics reviewing The Republic of Wine have compared to that of Tolstoy. The stories range from the tragic to the comic, though Mo Yan's humor is always tinged with a shade of black. They embody, too, the author's deep and abiding love of his fellow man, equaled only by his intense disdain of bureaucracy and repression. His fiction is never didactic. Satire, fantasy, the supernatural, mystery: all are present in this remarkable, and intensely enjoyable, volume.