<p><b>The phenomenal #1 Chinese bestseller, with over 2.5 million copies sold. This is a searing exploration of what makes a hero: a literary masterpiece, available in the English language for the very first time.</b></p><p>The boy grows up in a small village in south China listening to stories about the Colonel: some say he was a legendary army doctor during the war, some say he was a traitor to the Party, still others say he is a wicked sex machine. The stories are bawdy and mesmerizing, always larger than life. Yet in reality, the Colonel is just a middle-aged man who loves his cat. And why on earth does everyone call him 'the Eunuch'?</p><p>From these disparate sources, the boy tries to piece together who the Colonel really is, just as he himself grows up in a rapidly changing China. It is not until many years later, when the boy also becomes a middle-aged man, that he would look back and finally solve the puzzle.</p><p><i>The Colonel and the Eunuch</i> is Mai Jia's first new novel in eight years and his most ambitious work to date. An exciting departure from spy thrillers, this is a coming-of-age story, a family saga, as well as a searing exploration of what makes a hero. The Colonel is Mai Jia's singular creation: an almost mythic figure shrouded in the tragedy of war and history, whose story will move even the most stone-hearted to tears.</p>
<p>A literary coming-of-age story set in twentieth-century China. The Colonel is an almost mythic figure shrouded in the tragedy of war and history – but why does everyone call him 'the Eunuch'?</p>
'Reading this book is akin to summiting a perilous peak, trekking upwards until a faint path reveals itself, then looking back on the expansive view below... Mai Jia takes many risks, occasionally writing himself into what seem to be impossible situations, but he always dances away from disaster. We fear for him, but then we are forced to admire his skill even more'
Mo Yan, winner of the Nobel Prize for Literature
'Uses the mythic adventures of its protagonist to connect the dots of China's 20th century history... In this latest work, Mai Jia, noted for his spy novels, leaves his comfort zone to explore the mysteries of human nature... [A] testament to the author's ambition and commitment to his artform'
Southern Metropolis Daily
'Mai Jia's masterpiece; it's both perfectly representative of his work, while also being completely different. I think the term 'hypnagogia' – that transitional state between dreams and reality – might be the best one to describe the book'
'The novel's disgraced Colonel is emblematic of our parents' generation. <i>The Colonel and the Eunuch</i> is a cello sonata for our fathers'
Su Tong, winner of the Mao Dun Literature Prize
<p>Mai Jia ia a bestselling author – this is his first new novel in eight years and his most ambitious work to date.</p>
<p>Covers a broad stretch of Chinese history, from the Republican era to the present day.</p>
<p>Has won numerous awards and sold over 2.5 million copies in China.</p>
<p>MARKET: <i>Pachinko</i>; <i>Do Not Say We Have Nothing</i>; <i>Wuhan</i>; <i>Wild Swans</i>.</p>