Longest Chinese novel selling well

Updated: 2011-12-07 13:11

(China Daily)

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Novelist Zhang Wei's latest epic You Are on the Highland - possibly the longest Chinese-language novel ever at 4.5 million Chinese characters - has sold 500,000 copies since it was published in March 2010.

"The novel's strong sales are not coincidental and should be attributed to its quality," says He Jianming, head of the Writers Publishing House, which released the novel.

The 10-volume work took Zhang 22 years and won the prestigious national Mao Dun Literature Prize in 2011. It paints a picture of the dramatic social changes China has undergone over the last century through the stories of characters born in the 1950s.

"This has been my most complicated work, the one on which I have exerted the most mental and physical effort," Zhang said, during his Mao Dun acceptance speech.

Zhang's other major novels include The Ancient Ship and September's Fable, both of which have been published overseas with numerous reprints.

"Although economic development has created a type of fast-food culture, we believe a considerable portion of readers are still eager for high-quality publications," He says. "This encouraged us to publish the work."