A beautifully written, timeless tale by Cao Wenxuan, best-selling Chinese author and 2016 recipient of the prestigious Hans Christian Andersen Award.
Sunflower is an only child, and when her father is sent to the rural Cadre School, she has to go with him. Her father is an established artist from the city and finds his new life of physical labor and endless meetings exhausting. Sunflower is lonely and longs to play with the local children in the village across the river. When her father tragically drowns, Sunflower is taken in by the poorest family in the village, a family with a son named Bronze. Until Sunflower joins his family, Bronze was an only child, too, and hasn’t spoken a word since he was traumatized by a terrible fire. Bronze and Sunflower become inseparable, understanding each other as only the closest friends can. Translated from Mandarin, the story meanders gracefully through the challenges that face the family, creating a timeless story of the trials of poverty and the power of love and loyalty to overcome hardship.
Cao Wenxuan is one of China’s most esteemed children’s book writers and has won several of China’s important awards for children’s literature. Bronze and Sunflower is his first full-length book to be translated into and published in English. A professor of Chinese literature at Peking University, Cao Wenxuan has seen many of his books become bestsellers in China, and his work has been translated into French, Russian, Japanese, and Korean.
Helen Wang studied Chinese at the School of Oriental and African Studies in London and is now a curator at the British Museum. She has been a translator for more than twenty years. She lives in London.