Nobies57's Reviews > Mao's Last Dancer

Mao's Last Dancer by Li Cunxin
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's review
May 25, 2011

really liked it
bookshelves: hist-fic-ya
Read in April, 2011

This book will teach you what it was like to grow up in Communist China under Mao. Li Cunxin is growing up in extreme poverty in rural China. One of seven boys he is miraculously selected at the age of 11 to be brought to Beijing to be trained in dance by the Ballet of China.
Like many of the Chinese youth, Li Cunxin is devoted to Mao and is a member of the red youth corps. Arriving in Beijing Li Cunxin is struck by the affluence and waste. Here he has been on the brink of starvation for all his childhood and in Beijing there is food to waste.
As an accomplished dancer Li Cunxin travels to the United States. To his surprise the realities of capitalism do not match the stories he has been told all his life. He finds free democracy irresistible and through some interesting turns in the story, winds up defecting to the United States and there's even a happy ending.

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