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Unbound: A True Story of War, Love, and Survivalby Dean King
Synopses & Reviews
In October 1934, the Chinese Communist Army found itself facing annihilation, surrounded by hundreds of thousands of Nationalist soldiers. Rather than surrender, 86,000 Communists embarked on an epic flight to safety. Only thirty were women. Their trek would eventually cover 4,000 miles over 370 days. Under enemy fire they crossed highland awamps, climbed Tibetan peaks, scrambled over chain bridges, and trudged through the sands of the western deserts. Fewer than 10,000 of them would survive, but remarkably all of the women would live to tell the tale.
Unbound is an amazing story of love, friendship, and survival written by a new master of adventure narrative.
"King spent five years retracing their trek and interviewing survivors and historians to offer a very human account of an event that has loomed large in Chinese history." Booklist
"Theirs are stories of courage, remarkable not only because of the physical and psychological rigors of their journey, but also because of their determination....China has always been a mysterious and secretive empire, but Unbound peels back the curtain to reveal a story of strength and survival." Bookpage
"A terrific feminist story and a significant document of this incredible human feat." Kirkus Reviews
"Unbound is an authoritative account of the Long March, but its evocations of the marchers' experiences will linger long after the historical details slip from readers' memories." The Richmond Times-Dispatch
Book News Annotation:
In 1934, Mao Zedong's Red Army broke free from encirclement by Nationalist troops and began its epic 4,000-mile Long March to safety in China's north. This book by journalist Dean King tells the story of 30 women who fled their village to join the Red Army in that trek, an ordeal that only one out of ten people--but almost all of the women--survived. Based on research that included finding previously unpublished short biographies and interviewing the last surviving female survivor of the Long March, the author recreates the women's journey, focusing on their personal experiences rather than the historic and political context of that journey. While some might question King's recreations of conversations that took place over 70 years ago, the book is nonetheless a ripping good read, providing a fascinating new view of one of the 20th century's most important events. Annotation ©2010 Book News, Inc., Portland, OR (booknews.com)
In 1934, the Chinese Communist Army found itself facing annihilation, surrounded by hundreds of thousands of Nationalist soldiers. Rather than surrender, 86,000 Communists, with only 30 women, embarked on an epic flight to safety. Ten thousand would survive — including all 30 women.
In October 1934, 30 brave Chinese women left their respective homes to join the Chinese Communist Army and march against the hundreds of thousands of enemy soldiers who had surrounded them. Together with 86,000 Red Army soldiers-including future Chinese leaders Mao Zedong, Deng Xiaoping, and Zhou Enlai-these women embarked on an epic escape, covering more than 4,000 brutal miles in the course of one year. The journey would be one of the most horrific in history, but remarkably almost every woman would live to tell the tale. And then they were forgotten. In UNBOUND Dean King reveals the astonishing true story of this tiny group of revolutionaries. A landmark piece of historical detective work and dramatic storytelling, King's book is an unforgettable tale of love, friendship, and survival against all odds.
About the Author
Dean King is the author of the national bestseller Skeletons on the Zahara. He has written for many publications, including Men's Journal, Esquire, Outside, New York Magazine, and the New York Times. He lives in Richmond, Virginia.
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