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Publisher's Summary

On her 40th birthday, Madame Wu carries out a decision she has been planning for a long time: she tells her husband that after 24 years their physical life together is now over and she wishes him to take a second wife. The House of Wu, one of the oldest and most revered in China, is thrown into an uproar by her decision, but Madame Wu will not be dissuaded and arranges for a young country girl to come take her place in bed.

Elegant and detached, Madame Wu orchestrates this change as she manages everything in the extended household of more than sixty relatives and servants. Alone in her own quarters, she relishes her freedom and reads books she has never been allowed to touch. When her son begins English lessons, she listens, and is soon learning from the "foreigner," a free-thinking priest named Brother Andre, who will change her life.

Pavilion of Women is a thought-provoking combination of Old China, unorthodox Christianity, and liberation, written by Pearl S. Buck, a Nobel Prize winner born and raised in China. Few stories raise so many questions about the nature and roles of men and women, about self-discipline and happiness. At the center is the amazing Madame Wu - brilliant, beautiful, full of contradictions and authority.

©1990 Pearl S. Buck (P)2011 Oasis Audio

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  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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  • LRC
  • 13-04-2013

Elegant story, takes you through time and culture

Although this novel was written long ago, the tale is still as engaging and enjoyable many generations later. It's a great journey into a country village where prominent families ruled and the world was at war with itself. The story is read well by a male voice who was able to tell this tale with the depth, variety, emotion and understand it deserves. Very good performance of a wonderful story of Madame Wu. Highly recommended!

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  • Axis
  • 26-09-2020

Started out well... BUT...

The initial premise - the wife deciding to get her husband a concubine when she gets to forty - is intriguing. Unfortunately Madame Wu becomes increasingly smug and annoying - to this reader at least - as her ‘spiritual awakening’ evolves. By the end you want someone to kick her outdoors. The narrator’s reverent tone could be adding to this feeling... I have not read the actual book.

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  • Viper
  • 19-08-2018

A book with a most beautiful soul.

A book full of wisdom. Most loved and read again and again over fourty years. Although read by a male person an incredible good performance! I was most positively surprised!

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  • gerrard
  • 16-05-2017

A book good for the soul

This beautifully narrated gently paced book is full of pearls of wisdom for our generation.

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  • Ivan
  • 28-04-2015

Remarkable...

Madam Wu kicks-ass:) Great story through time, I would definitely recommend the book.. Z z z z z z

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