Summary

This is the true story of how one moment in time, by the thinnest thread of a chance, changed the course of a small boy's life in ways that are beyond description. One day he would dance with some of the greatest ballet companies of the world. One day he would be a friend to a president and first lady, movie stars, and the most influential people in America. One day he would become a star: Mao's last dancer, and the darling of the West. Here is Li Cunxin's own story, a beautiful, rich account of an inspirational life, told with honesty, dignity, and pride.
©2003 Li Cunxin (P)2004 Bolinda Publishing Pyt Ltd by arrangement with Penguin Group (Australia)
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Critic reviews

"[A] heartening rags-to-riches story" ( Publishers Weekly)
"[Paul English] exercises such an intense and masterful concentration on the text that the listener's interest never flags....He imbues the narrative with ingenuousness and enthusiasm, which endearingly befit the image Li is attempting to present of himself. The result is an audiobook that is superior to its source." ( AudioFile)
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Regular price: £32.89

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful
5 out of 5 stars
By Amazon Customer on 08-07-17

A great read!

I don't find many books readable so I'm glad I found this one. It is an entertaining and educational read from beginning to end and I especially enjoyed the first half about the childhood and youth in China. I warmly recommend everyone to read Mao's last dancer.

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful
4 out of 5 stars
By Deborah on 04-04-08

Has the "ring" of truth

Having been to China during the time period covered in this book, and more recently - this book seemed very "on point" to me. I enjoyed the pure wonder that the main character - a newcomer to the "west" - experienced in America and would highly recommend this to anyone wishing to take a look behind the "bamboo curtain". Very, very interesting and insightful read.

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14 of 14 people found this review helpful

5 out of 5 stars
By PSprout on 29-01-06

Life in perspective

As someone who is neither a dancer nor well educated about life in China during the Cultural Revolution, the information in this book was out of my usual interest zone, and I am so glad that the Audible blurb caught my attention and lured me in! This is a fascinating book, and despite its length it captured my attention throughout. I kept having to remind myself that Li Cunxin is slightly younger than I am, although the experiences of his childhood and youth sound as though they must have occured a century before. Compared to the freedom and comfort of average American life in the past four decades, Li's life was grim. However, his attitude, determination, and family support are all the more inspring because of how much he had to overcome. I highly recommend this book. While the narrator's voice is wonderful, I would have preferred an Asian narrator, because the British accent at times became overwhelming. I am a visual listener, and I had trouble visualizing a young Chinese male when listening to this narrator. Other than that, I have no reservations about this book. I just wish I could have the opportunity to see Li dance!

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54 of 58 people found this review helpful

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