Seventeen-year-old Alex Jackson comes home from school to find that his father, a CBC news cameraman, wants to take him to China's capital, Beijing. Once there, Alex finds himself on his own in Tian An Men Square as desperate students fight the Chinese army for their freedom. Forbidden City is a novel based on the events of the Tiananmen Square massacre in It is a story of maturation/coming of age. Seventeen-year-old Alex Jackson comes home from school to find that his father, a CBC news cameraman, wants to take him to China's capital, Beijing.

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Forbidden City Book

Editorial Reviews. From Publishers Weekly. Despite certain shortcomings, this fictionalized . If you want a big, glossy picture book of the Forbidden City don't download this book. If you want something lovely that you'll keep forever, download it indeed!. Seventeen-year-old Alex Jackson comes home from school to find that his father, a CBC news cameraman, wants to take him to China's capital. Forbidden City. William Bell, Author Delacorte Press Books for Young Readers $ (0p) ISBN Tweet. More By and About This Author.

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Forbidden City by William Bell

Imperial Treasures from the Palace Museum, Beijing. Read more. Product details Age Range: Mass Market Paperback: Laurel Leaf January 10, Language: English ISBN Tell the Publisher! I'd like to read this book on Kindle Don't have a Kindle?

Share your thoughts with other customers. Write a customer review. Read reviews that mention forbidden city william bell beijing china tiananmen square recommend this book book want alex guide barme buildings students boring father communist imperial massacre stop architecture event main.

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There was a problem filtering reviews right now. Please try again later. Paperback Verified download. I wish I had this when I was meandering around the Forbidden City. I had wandered into areas clearly unintended for the public. Half expecting to be apprehended by public security at any moment I furtively walked through weed-filed courtyards and debris cluttered passageways. I wiped off dust from ancient glass windows and peered into secondary rooms and stately halls and attempted to comprehend what they might have been like when they contained imperial lives.

The patina of dust and disarray rendered the scenes with a mystery and romance that the more accessible places lacked.

Forbidden City (novel) - Wikipedia

Reading Barme's guide made it all come alive for me in a way that none of the travel guides I had with me could. Barme's guide is indispensable for all intelligent travelers. One person found this helpful. As with other titles in this unusual series, those people expecting a standard on-site walking guide to an historic site will be taken aback by the quite extensive background information and commentary on the Forbidden City and its constituent edifices, together with tangential information about certain connections of the site with notable persons throughout its history.

Thus, the book offers material of deeper interest, beyond mere identifications, skeletal descriptions, and mention of names and dates; accordingly, it serves principally as pre- and post-visit reading to enhance the on-site experience, where a simple plan and text serve best for hurried tourists.

Hardcover Verified download. This is an admirable little book, dealing with an iconic building in China, if not a series of buildings, the Forbidden City.

The product of the Ming and Qing rulerz and a symbol of China and its recent history no one building could probably symbolize all of it, given the age of the culture and its continuity. I approached this book with expectations of learning two things, first about Chinese building cocepts and techniques. In this first thing, the book does not provide much to enhance understanding of this particular point. There is a glossary of terms, but really if you are seeking to understand Chinese imperial architecture, this is not the book for you.

The novel Forbidden City by William Bell

Despite these shortcomings, the book does succeed very well in discussing the meaning that these series of buildings has had and will likely have as long as there is a China and how this has changed as living memories of the revolution have faded. As is always the case, as China has become less ideological and more reasonable, there is a greater appreciation of the past and more respect for what the Forbidden City means to the population in general.

During the Cultural Revolution, Zhou Enlai felt the only thing that could be done with the building was to close it because tempers ran so high.

There are also marvelous stories about the building and its content. I suppose that because I grew up near New Orleans, I have always liked stories about faded glory and decadence of the always reliable upper classes. In the aftermath of the fall of the Q'ing dynasty, both the eunuchs and Pu Yi, the last emperor were apparently competing in some sort of contest of larceny before the entire collection of the Forbidden City could be catalogued and placed in glass cases for the edification of the general public.

The eunuchs managed to get out enough to set themselves up in a series of antique stores in the vicinity of the Forbidden City. The former emperor he was six when he abdicated managed to get enough out to furnish his shabby court when he was ruler of the Japanese puppet state of Manchukuo here, as always, the Japanese helped out.

Both sides eyed each as they hid various priceless treasures, the eunuchs burning down an entire building in order to cover up their crimes.


Both the stories and the quest for meaning provide the central strengths of the book.. So if you are looking for something to provide you with insight or are just curious about imperial Chinese history, check out this book. It is worth the effort. Mass Market Paperback Verified download. The very book that got me hooked on reading when I was in 7th grade.

Truly a book that I could not put down despite being a super-active pre-teen. If you want a big, glossy picture book of the Forbidden City don't download this book. If you want something lovely that you'll keep forever, download it indeed!

This is the "Little Black Book" on the subject of the palace itself and so much more. It's a small, neat, lovely to handle edition whose only colour is in the red endpapers that are exactly the red of the Forbidden City's palace walls. The old, grainy, black and white photographs add to the pleasure and increase the feeling that you are getting something true and genuine instead of just another travel guide. Since many things happened to him when he went to Beijing, China, it seemed like a corner in his life.

This corner changed the world which he viewed. Alex became from a boy who like military history, adventure, and admire heroes, to a person who knew truth, responsibility, and meaning of brave. Before Alex went to Beijing, he simply likes Chinese military.

As he stayed in Beijing for few months, he found that there were more differences than he thought. He becomes more mature.

Alex is addicted to Chinese military history, and he made many clay soldiers at his own home. He realized that he just found the surface of the truth before. Before Alex went to Beijing, he likes adventure.

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As he met with that horrible and bloody massacre, his responsibility was growing. Everything needs to be organized before he wants to do. He felt sorry for Lao-Xu. Alex saw that Lao-Xu felt on the ground with his warm blood. He knew that he needed to find his father and he did care about him.

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