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October 24, 2019

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Next book discussion at library Feb. 5

February's book: “Balzac and the Little Chinese Seamstress"

Ada Public Library’s adult book discussion group’s focus in February is “Balzac and the Little Chinese Seamstress" by Dai Sijie (translated by Ina Rilke).

The book discussion, open to the public, is at 7 p.m., Tuesday, Feb. 5, in the library. The monthly discussion group is open to new members and registration is requested.  

Copies of each month’s books are available. Contact the circulation desk for a copy or more information. 

Book synopsis

In this enchanting tale about the magic of reading and the wonder of romantic awakening, two hapless city boys are exiled to a remote mountain village for reeducation during China's infamous Cultural Revolution. There they meet the daughter of the local tailor and discover a hidden stash of Western classics in Chinese translation. As they flirt with the seamstress and secretly devour these banned works, they find transit from their grim surroundings to worlds they never imagined.

About the author

Dai Sijie was born in China in 1954. He grew up working in his father's tailor shop. He himself became a skilled tailor. The Maoist government sent him to a reeducation camp in rural Sichuan from 1971 to 1974, during the Cultural Revolution. After his return, he was able to complete high school and university, where he studied art history.

In 1984, he left China for France on a scholarship. There, he acquired a passion for movies and became a director. Before turning to writing, he made three critically acclaimed feature-length films. He also wrote and directed a film adaptation of Balzac and the Little Chinese Seamstress, released in 2002. He lives in Paris and writes in French.

Upcoming Books on the 2019 monthly discussion series:

March – "Everything I Never Told You" by Celeste Ng