The Garden of Evening Mists (Paperback)
Hachette Books, 9781602861800, 352pp.
Publication Date: September 4, 2012
About the Author
"The Gift of Rain" was nominated for the Man Booker Prize, and has been translated into Italian, Spanish, Greek, Romanian, Czech and Serbian.
Tan Twan Eng lives in Cape Town where he is working on his third novel.
Praise For The Garden of Evening Mists…
“The Garden of Evening Mists offers action-packed, end-of-empire storytelling in the vein of Tan’s compatriot Tash Aw. His fictional garden cultivates formal harmony –but also undermines it. It unmasks sophisticated artistry as a partner of pain and lies. This duality invests the novel with a climate of doubt; a mood – as with Aritomo’s creation – of “tension and possibility”. Its beauty never comes to rest.”
“A rising star from Malaysia . . . Tan writes with breath-catching poise and grace. [The Garden of Evening Mists is a novel of] linguistic refinement and searching intelligence. . . . But for all its mission to ‘capture stillness on paper’. . . The Garden of Evening Mists also offers action-packed, end-of-empire storytelling.”
“The unexpected relationship between a war-scarred woman and an exiled gardener leads to a journey through remorse to a kind of peace. After a notable debut, Eng (The Gift of Rain, 2008) returns to the landscape of his origins with a poetic, compassionate, sorrowful novel set in the aftermath of World War II in Malaya…Grace and empathy infuse this melancholy landscape of complex loyalties enfolded by brutal history, creating a novel of peculiar, mysterious, tragic beauty.” – Kirkus Reviews, STARRED REVIEW
“Like his debut, The Gift of Rain (2007), Tan’s second novel is exquisite…Tan triumphs again, entwining the redemptive power of storytelling with the elusive search for truth, all the while juxtaposing Japan’s inhumane war history with glorious moments of Japanese art and philosophy. All readers in search of spectacular writing will not be disappointed.”
"Beautifully written...Eng is quite simply one of the best novelists writing today."
Conversation Starters from ReadingGroupChoices.com
- The author introduces Yun Ling as she is entering retirement, and slowly reveals the key experiences that have shaped her life. What was your initial impression of the main character and how did it change as the novel progressed?generic viagra price canada
- As a research clerk in the war crimes tribunal directly after the war, Yun Ling is intimately involved in the national process of punishment and healing after the horrors of the Japanese invasion. Yet, she is hardly healed, and she has her own motives for this work. Can the Japanese crimes be forgiven?generic viagra price canada
- Violence is a frequent presence in Yun Ling’s life, from the labor camp to the CT invasion to the destruction of her memory. How does she cope with the trauma of these events? Is she successful?generic viagra price canada
- Not just violence, but sexual violence is a factor in the novel. How did you grapple with Yun Hong’s experience as one of the “comfort women” in the camp and the shame she felt as a result?generic viagra price canada
- Intertwined with the traumatic episodes, art – including literature, painting, and, of course, garden design – appears constantly in the book. Consider some key examples (i.e., Yun Hong’s painting, the supposed Golden Lily hoard, Yugiri itself) and discuss their importance to the novel.generic viagra price canada
- Aritomo’s final artistic work is not a garden but a horimono, a tattoo covering much of Yun Ling’s battered body. What is the significance of this act to their relationship and to the novel?generic viagra price canada
- There is a constant struggle between memory and forgetting in the novel. How does the experience of the camp change Yun Ling’s relationship to memory?generic viagra price canada
- Frederik and Yun Ling have a brief encounter when she first arrives at Majuba estate, and he makes it clear that he has strong feelings for her throughout the book. Why do you think Yun Ling chooses Aritomo over Frederik?generic viagra price canada
- Why does Yun Ling, after all her searching and striving, choose not to use the possible clues from her horimono to try and locate her camp? Is this a hopeful novel?generic viagra price canada