Beijing intellectual Chen Zhen volunteers to live in a remote settlement on the border of Inner and Outer Mongolia, where he discovers life of apparent idyllic simplicity amongst the nomads and the wild wolves who roam the plains. But when members of the People’s Republic swarm in from the cities to bring modernity and productivity to the grasslands, the peace of Chen’s solitary existence is shattered, and the delicate balance between humans and wolves is disrupted. Only time will tell whether the grasslands environment and culture will ever recover. Wolf Totem has been a sensation ever since it shot to the top of the Chinese bestseller charts in 2004. A beautiful and moving portrayal of a land and culture that no longer exists, it is also a powerful portrait of modern China and a fascinating insight into the country’s own view of itself, its history and its people.
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