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Book Cover for: The Cook, the Crook, and the Real Estate Tycoon, Liu Zhenyun

The Cook, the Crook, and the Real Estate Tycoon

Liu Zhenyun

Winner of the Mao Dun Literature Prize

The Cook, the Crook, and the Real Estate Tycoon by prize-winning Chinese novelist Liu Zhenyun, paints a microcosm of contemporary China, dealing with classes at the two extremes: the super rich and the migrant workers who make them rich through deceit and corruption. The protagonist, Liu Yuejin, is a work site cook and small-time thief whose bag is stolen. In searching for it he stumbles upon another bag, which contains a flash disk that chronicles high-level corruption, and sets off a convoluted chase. There are no heroes in this scathing, complex, and highly readable critique of the dark side of China's predatory capitalism, corruption, and the plight of the underclasses. A movie adaptation and TV series appeared in 2008 in China.

Book Details

  • Publisher: Arcade Publishing
  • Publish Date: Mar 18th, 2025
  • Pages: 288
  • Language: English
  • Dimensions: 0.00in - 0.00in - 0.00in - 1.25lb
  • EAN: 9781648210952
  • Categories: Family Life - GeneralLiteraryMystery & Detective - International Crime & Mystery

About the Author

Goldblatt, Howard: - Howard Goldblatt is a literary translator of numerous works of contemporary Chinese fiction from mainland China and Taiwan, including Nobel Prize-winner Mo Yan, five of whose works are published by Arcade (The Garlic Ballads; The Republic of Wine; Big Breasts and Wide Hips; Life and Death Are Wearing Me Out; Shifu, You'll Do Anything for a Laugh). He has also translated works by Liu Zhenyun (I Did Not Kill My Husband; The Cook, the Crook, and the Real Estate Tycoon; Remembering 1942, which are published by Arcade), Huang Chunming (The Taste of Apples), and Chen Ruoxi (The Execution of Mayor Yin). He taught modern Chinese literature and culture for more than a quarter of a century. He lives in Lafayette, Colorado.

Praise for this book

Praise for The Cook, the Crook, and the Real Estate Tycoon:

"The power of this novel is derived, partly, from the sharp glance the author casts at the modern Chinese society, plagued by corruption, poverty, and injustice. The dark tale is lightened by the author's delicious humor. Liu Zhenyun is an outstanding storyteller. --Lijia Zhang, author of Socialism is Great!

"Liu's fiction is a romp through modern Beijing that pits migrant workers from the provinces against billionaires and officials, making a wry statement about modern China and a thoroughly entertaining book." --Kirkus Reviews

"An intricate, dark-hearted crime tale . . . The web of deceptions, double crosses, and betrayals Zhenyun builds into his ambitious, complex novel result in a rich depiction of the criminal underworld." --Publishers Weekly

"Readers will enjoy this immersion in urban China and Liu's rollicking-good send-up of modern-day predatory capitalism." --Booklist

"Those who enjoy Chinese literature will appreciate how the novel openly provides commentary on the disparity between the economic social classes and unscrupulous corruption found in almost any society." --Library Journal