“An epic, multi-generational novel set during The Long March about two people caught in the crosshairs of war . . . A sweeping tale of country, family, and war that is rich with well-researched historical detail.”
“Wang’s thoughtful and richly detailed debut novel . . . follows several characters swept up in Mao Zedong’s Communist uprising in the 1930s . . . Wang does a great job showing how the bit players in this large-scale historical drama come to grips with the turbulent period and struggle to survive. Thanks to the colorful characters, Wang’s saga is consistently engaging.”
“Love, loss, and sacrifice are at the center of Michael X. Wang’s historical novel . . . Lost in the Long March is a story about lingering trauma and the price that’s paid when ideology trumps love.”
“This epic novel is set during the Long March in 1930s China. Wang, who won the 2021 PEN/Robert W. Bingham Prize for Debut Short Story Collection for his debut short story collection, translates his story crafting skills throughout this novel with great success.”
“Wang’s powerful storytelling . . . makes for a promising debut.”
―Asian Review of Books
China, 1934: A naive orphan and shy gunsmith, Ping has fallen in love with Yong, a sophisticated veteran, skilled sharpshooter, and true believer in Mao and the Marxist ideology. As the Red Army begins its year-long tactical retreat, the Long March, Yong turns to Ping for comfort and companionship. Yong becomes pregnant, and soon their son is born. The Army can’t retreat with a crying infant, so they leave the child with a village woman and promise to return once the war is won. . .
Deeply moving and rendered in spare, muscular prose, Michael X. Wang’s marvel of a debut novel, Lost in the Long March (The Overlook Press; November 1, 2022), drives toward a shocking reunion and resolution. Following the characters to the China of the 1970s and Mao’s Communist Party as it has evolved, Wang tells a story that masterfully contrasts the intimate with the political, brilliantly revealing how the history of a country is always the story of its people, even though their stories can be the first to be lost.