Author showcases autograph collection

Updated: 2012-06-19 13:57

By Mei Jia (China Daily)

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Author showcases autograph collection

Xiong Guangkai (pictured), who has served as an army general and strategist for decades, is an ardent collector.

He keeps books, ink paintings and Chinese seal carvings. But Xiong's most unique collection is of autographs.

His latest book, Collecting Life: First Day Covers published by Xinhua Press, is a showcase of his autograph collection, including those of Chinese leaders like Mao Zedong, Deng Xiaoping and Hu Jintao. Xiong also has a collection of signatures from foreign leaders, including Vladimir Putin and Condoleezza Rice.

The book is not just a prideful show-off but is rich with photos of the autograph signing events and little-known stories about his personal connections with the people mentioned in the books.

There is so much frankness in Xiong's narration, in which he offers observations and other interesting details of the personalities.

This is what he wrote about Putin: "Putin looks much younger than he really is." Xiong also notes that he once spoke with Putin in German, a language they both know.