【Industrial】Allure of pages

  • Source:China Daily | Yang Yang | 2019-01-02

Amazon China releases a list of 25 influential translated books of the past 40 years based on online polls.


Guo Bensheng, director of xinhuanet.com, announces Amazon China's list of 25 influential translated works in the past 40 years at Amazon China's annual ceremony last week. [Photo provided to China Daily]

Amazon China recently released the final list of "the 25 influential translated works in the last 40 years", as the country marks the 40th anniversary of the reform and opening-up.

The 25 books were chosen based on an online poll.

The list includes classical novels, such as One Hundred Years of Solitude by Gabriel Garcia Marquez, The Moon and Sixpence by Somerset Maugham, Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen, Gone With the Wind by Margret Mitchell, The Catcher in the Rye by J.D. Salinger and The Great Gatsby by F. Scott Fitzgerald.

The best-sellers in social sciences include The Chrysanthemum and the Sword by Ruth Benedict, A Global History by Leften Stavrianos, the recent A Brief History of Humankind by Yuval Noah Harari and The Silk Roads: A New History of the World by Peter Frankopan. And popular-science books include A Brief History of Time by Stephen Hawking and Seven Brief Lessons on Physics by Carlo Rovelli.

Most of the rest are recent best-selling novels, such as The Century Trilogy by Ken Follett, Everything I Never Told You by Celeste Ng, The Kite Runner by Khaled Hosseini and Miracles of the Namiya General Store by Keigo Higashino.

Chinese publishers Yilin Press, Shanghai Translation Publishing House, Commercial Press, Citic Press and Xiron Publishing, among others, recommended the titles for the list before Amazon China conducted the vote on xinhuanet.com and Amazon-owned social platforms. More than 16,000 people voted online for influential works of the last 40 years.


Amazon China's best-selling electronic books in 2018 include Somerset Maugham's The Moon and Sixpence, Liu Cixin's The Three-Body Trilogy, Chinese classic Six Chapters of a Floating Life by Shen Fu of the Qing Dynasty (1644-1911) and Yu Hua's To Live. [Photo provided to China Daily]

"The result is especially great for me," Chinese writer Su Tong said at Amazon China's annual ceremony last week.

His novella, Raise the Red Lantern, has been translated into many languages, including English, French and Italian, and has been adapted into an Oscar-nominated movie of the same title, directed by Zhang Yimou.

"The list includes great writers like Marquez, Salinger and Austen. They are, in young people's words, 'godlike beings'. Marquez, for example, has been a lighthouse for not only me but also for writers born in the 1950s, '60s and '70s," Su says, adding that Marquez's influence on him transcends diction, narration and characterization.

Amazon China also released other lists of best-selling printed books and electronic books based on the company's sales in 2018.

Data by Amazon China show that Chinese readers this year paid more attention to books on business and money, and comics such as Banxiaoshi Manhua Shijieshi (Caricatured World's History) and Biaoren (The Escort) were popular as well as classics.


Ray Dalio's Principles: Life and Work tops the list of best-selling printed books based on Amazon China's sales in 2018. [Photo provided to China Daily]

Ray Dalio's Principles: Life and Work topped the three best-selling lists-printed books, electronic books and printed books published in 2018. Apart from Principles, three more books on business and money made the best-selling list of printed books published in 2018.

At an age when people's time is fragmented, humorous comic books that are easy to read have become an important way for readers to use their time. As a result, the best-selling lists of printed books published in 2018 and of electronic books have three comic books each, including the first two volumes of Caricatured World's History. These books were the most likely to be finished by Chinese readers in 2018, Amazon China says.

In 2018, Chinese readers were also very keen on reading classics, such as The Moon and Sixpence, Six Chapters of a Floating Life by Shen Fu from the Qing Dynasty (1644-1911), To Live by Yu Hua and The Stranger by Albert Cumus, the company adds.


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