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Sun Wei

One of China’s Most Original and Leading Voices


A former journalist, documentary filmmaker, and corporate general manager, Sun Wei is a novelist who tells stories of the most authentic contemporary Shanghai.


The 18 books she has published include the novels “The Map of Time" "Person in a Bottle" “To Where the Flowers Blossom” “The Confession of a Bear” “The Good Old Days with Democracy, Science and Law” and the short story series Sun on Riches: “The Rich in China” “In the Name of Love” “The Adventures of Mary Qian” “Showcase of the Wealth” “Love and Desire”, the short story collection "How to Forget You in the Rest of My Life", among others. 


Her novels have won dozens of awards, including the Excellence Award of Chinese Writers’ Erdos National Literature Award. Her novel “The Map of Time” is a best-seller in China 2017. "Person in a Bottle" is in the process of being adapted into a TV series and a movie by the director Zhang Yibai, who is a representative of sixth generation directors in China.


The English version of “The Confession of a Bear” was published in the US. Her novella "Farewell" "Ignition" "Second Son" was translated into English, French, Spanish, Bulgarian, and published in the local literature journals. 


As one of the Shanghai middle class, Sun Wei is acutely tuned to the many psychological issues of Chinese urban dwellers, and her works vividly reflect their loneliness, pride and sense of alienation. The tension and horror of contemporary life that Sun Wei’s fiction reveals has caused a sensation in recent years.


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Sun Wei’s writing describes in detail today’s Shanghai, a well-developed metropolis. Her novels mainly focus on the strife, bullying and stress of the contemporary workplace, with characters running the gamut of all social classes, including bureaucrats, billionaires, and celebrities, as well as ordinary people.


Her stories investigate the "malaise" in contemporary China. In the last three decades, the economy has been developing at an incredible speed, which brings both miracles and disasters to people’s lives. Sun Wei is interested in the awkward  conditions people now live under, where they are too busy even to know who they are.


Shanghai born and bred, Sun Wei is adept at peeling off the glazes from the surface of life and exposing the readers to the seamy side of a metropolis, in a way that is both appalling and close to the bone. All of her characters have a kind of split personality; they are incapable of coping with their relationships with each other and are even doubtful about their own existence.

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The grand, marvelous landscape (especially those set in the vast and mountainous areas) is the most attractive part of Sun Wei’s books. As a female writer, she rarely whines. Instead, she shines with her words coming boldly out of a passion and the strength of her character. Her writing is like a ray of sunshine flooding the room and radiating warmth and positive energy into the usual soft tints of the sky in South China. And that makes her stand out among many writers from Shanghai.

Sun Wei’s writings are truly inspirational as they give people courage and hope in the face of difficulty. She makes people see that love exists even if they are plunged into the depth of despair. 

                     ——Wang Hongtu, Fudan University literary professor


    Flexible and creative, Sun Wei is a talented and diligent writer who has gone beyond the stereotypes. Different from most writers of the 70s generation, Sun writes with crystal clear logic and a prudent voice that rarely involves erotic or seductive scenes. Her approach to literary composition where the writer observes the characters from a distance can be regarded as a classical style of writing. It may seem less appealing to modern readers who read for feverish productions. However, the tension, loneliness and horror of contemporary life transmitted from her writing has had a much stronger sensation in recent years.

                                    ——Liang Jie, literary critic