China Mountain Zhang

I just finished a novel and I can’t remember the last novel I read and this one was a work of speculative (science) fiction and the last SF I read was probably Gibson’s second to the last work.

The book I finished is China Mountain Zhang by Maureen F. McHugh (who has a lovely web site here and a blog about her recovery from lymphoma here). Copyright is 1992. This is McHugh’s first novel.

The story is somewhat near future (22nd century?), in a world where China has become the dominant world power and the United States has gone through a revolution of the proletariat. That’s all a backdrop to the stories of relationships of the various characters, loosely tied together by a main plot that follows the protagonist, Engineer China Mountain Zhang. Other characters include a couple of Martian settlers, a very ugly girl who becomes pretty, and a kite flier.

It is a very gentle book. It explores the insides of the character’s heads, always returning to the story of Zhang. Friends (and Mary, the wife) who I would not expect to like the SF genre, like this book.

So read it.

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