I witness bright Moonlight in front of my bed.
I suspect it to be hoary frost on the floor.
I watch the bright Moon, as I tilt back my head.
I yearn, while stooping, for my homeland more.
–Li Bai, Tang Dynasty
Every Chinese child three years or older can probably recite this most popular poem by the most famous Chinese poet Li Bai; Every Chinese adult, especially those who have travelled, away from home, far away, can relate to the poet’s sentiments, as I did, when I left China for the United Kingdom decades ago. Millions of Chinese migrants, to all corners of the world, will inevitably find their hearts and souls, resonating with the deep-rooted yearnings of Li Bai.
This poem marked the beginning and end of my book The Same Moon, charting an unforgettable journey of my protagonist Pearl Zhang.
Cited below are two recent reviews in 2017 by Amazon readers from the UK:
5.0 out of 5 stars
Epic and beautifully painted adventure that will keep you enthralled!
A fascinating epic story of a woman’s journey from east to west. The characters are utterly absorbing, subtly explored and completely believable. I am finding it really hard to put this book down as I follow the twists and turns of the main character, Pearl’s, eventful life. I love how this book gives me a glimpse into another world as we see China going through major political upheavals through the eyes of the main character. I’ve been to China quite a few times, and love how this book resonates with what I’ve seen and experienced, and made me aware of aspects of the culture. Even if you’ve never been and have no interest in going, the story is a really epic tale with twists and turns all the way that keep you rooting for Pearl as she meets it all with integrity and strength. This is just a perfect book to curl up with and become totally absorbed, I love how the rest of the real world disappears while I explore Pearl’s world. If you like to lose yourself in a book and savour the journey of a character that is painted with intimacy and care, I think you’ll love this book.
5.0 out of 5 stars
Feel Like I’ve Walked Hand in Hand With Pearl!
“Pearl grows up during Chairman Mao’s cultural revolution and has aspirations uncommon to most within that society at that time. However, she has to make some huge sacrifices along the way, to make those aspirations a reality. Take a walk with Pearl to discover a fascinating ( if troubling ) look at a completely different world.
The style of writing felt almost biographical at times, and took me into a world of which I had little knowledge. I particularly liked the first part of the story in China, though having said that, Pearl has such an interesting life wherever she is! Junying writes in such vivid detail that I felt as if I was there with Pearl, and what an amazing journey we’ve been on! We may all live under ‘the same moon’ but the diversity of our lives was never more clear than it is here, particularly for those of us who grew up in the West. A well written book, with a brave and determined lead character, make this a very interesting read.”
I’m glad that six years on since it was first published, there are still readers enjoying The Same Moon. I hope that with tonight’s full moon, no matter where you are, our hearts will beat the same rhythm as Li Bai when he poured out his heart on ink and paper, and leaving us a lasting legacy which will forever enrich our souls.
Happy Moon Festival! 中秋快乐！