Ren? Leys

Ren? Leys

Paperback New York Review Books Classics

By (author) Victor Segalen, Translated by J A Underwood, Introduction by Ian Buruma, Preface by Ian Buruma

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  • Format: Paperback | 240 pages
  • Dimensions: 127mm x 201mm x 15mm | 204g
  • Publication date: 31 July 2003
  • Publication City/Country: New York, NY
  • ISBN 10: 1590170415
  • ISBN 13: 9781590170410
  • Edition statement: Reprint
  • Sales rank: 543,670

Product description

In this entrancing story of spiritual adventure, a Westerner in Peking seeks the mystery at the heart of the Forbidden City. He takes as a tutor in Chinese the young Belgian Rene Leys, who claims to be in the know about strange goings-on in the Imperial Palace: love affairs, family quarrels, conspiracies that threaten the very existence of the empire. But whether truth-teller or trickster, the elusive and ever-charming Rene presents his increasingly dazzled disciple with a visionary glimpse of "an essential palace built upon the most magnificent foundations."

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Review quote

" Strange and memorable...Segalen had seen the truth in his lies and has left them this beautiful endorsement." --"The Japan Times" " An allegorical novel of Being [that] beneath the mask of irony Segalen poured into this book all the anguish of man in thrall to his limitations...this is the novel of the Impossibility of Knowing." --Henri Bouillier