A China That Never Was
November 18, 2005 8:36 AM Subscribe
"I shall clasp my hands together and bow to the corners of the world." Bridge of Birds by Barry Hughart won the World Fantasy Award in 1985. Set in a China that never was, it tells the tale of Master Li Kao, who has a slight flaw in his character, and Number Ten Ox as they uncover the mysteries of a cursed town, a terrible duke, and a beautiful woman. Originally intended to be the first in a series of seven, Bridge of Birds spawned only two sequels. The reclusive author explains some of his influences and poor luck here. Also, for those of you familiar with the story, the original draft of Bridge of Birds (PDF version) is available online!
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