A Message for the Emperor

By Mark Frutkin

A Message for the Emperor
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Plots, intrigue and love against the backdrop of imperial China.This is a unique novel of old China, the traditional landscape of mountains and rivers without end, and life in an imperial city rife with plots, intrigues, culture, sensuality and wealth.Li Wen, a landscape painter ... Read more


Overview

Plots, intrigue and love against the backdrop of imperial China.This is a unique novel of old China, the traditional landscape of mountains and rivers without end, and life in an imperial city rife with plots, intrigues, culture, sensuality and wealth.Li Wen, a landscape painter of the Song Dynasty (960-1279 AD), is on a journey to deliver a message to the Chinese Emperor. His teacher has instructed him to paint four landscapes, one for each season, during the year it will take him to travel across China to the Emperor’s Court where he is to present the paintings to the Emperor as a long-life gift. A series of gripping adventures befall Li Wen on his journey, including burial in an ancient tomb and a snowstorm that nearly ends his quest.

Mark Frutkin

Mark Frutkin is the author of over a dozen books of fiction, non-fiction and poetry. His works include the Trillium Book Award–winning Fabrizio's Return (Vintage, 2006), which was shortlisted for the Commonwealth Writers' Prize for Best Book, and Atmospheres Apollinaire (The Porcupine's Quill, 1988), which was shortlisted for the Governor General's Award, the Trillium and the Ottawa Book Award. His latest book, When Angels Come to Earth (Longbridge Books, 2020), presents a visual and poetic appreciation of Italian culture. He lives in Ottawa.

Reviews

“I loved A Message for the Emperor. The prose is sleek, restrained, flawless. There's research in there but you'd never know it. Frutkin seems to have inhaled ancient China and exhaled a parable of the artist. –Katherine Govier“Frutkin employs scholarly details like fine brushstrokes. A Message for the Emperor reads as a kind of ancient Chinese fable and as a meditation on the power and passion of artists.” –Trevor Cole

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