A China Literature Form

天觀雙俠 (繁體中文)

鄭丰 (陳宇慧)ISBN: 9789867131881

Pub. Date: 2007年07月19日

Publisher: 奇幻基地

How do I describe this style of literature? The straight translation will be “KungFu fictions.” But that is not justice. On the other hand, many will snicker at even trying to acknowledge them as literature, similar to what New York Times will call tabloids journalism, I guess. I have been obsessed with them when I was much younger, spending a big part of my allowance renting them (the other parts are on other similarly questionable categories).

This popular art form combines the elements of fantasy, western, history, and folk lores. Decades ago, no serious writers dare to use their real names writing these, lest ruining their pure artistic reputation. Many admitted subsidizing their normal salaries with this side-job, but usually long after they have firmly established themselves in the literature circle.

About 10 years ago, GU Long (古龙) and JIN Yong (金庸) changed the industry. The former wrote stories that are unrealistically and sappy poetic. The latter actually tried to turn this form into real literature. Mr. GU died from alcoholism: very fitting to his characters in the books. Mr. Jin essentially killed the industry by setting a new benchmark few can surpass.

Until this one came. I have not read Kung Fu books for so many years now. But this one captured me no less firmly than Harry Potter.

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