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To the Edge of the Sky

By Anhua Gao

A true story of life in China under Mao and the communists.

‘I wanted to tell the whole world the truth about China. People living outside didn’t really understand what happened – because my parents died a long time ago I could not do my duty and look after them. I was too young. So I have written a book for them.’

Despite suffering terrible heartache, loss and pain growing up in communist China, Anhua Gao found courage, hope and – eventually – love. This is her story: the story of a woman who, whether she tried to live with or struggle against the harsh ideology of Red China, was treated with shocking inhumanity.

When her parents died, leaving Anhua and her siblings orphans, they were hailed by Mao Tse-tung as revolutionary martyrs. But her parents’ reputation proved a fragile shield from the horrors of communist China. Her life torn apart by the whims of the state, Anhua found herself alone – something she fully realized when, after serving with distinction as a nurse in the Red Army, her own sister betrayed her, blighting her future.

Ill-treated for years by her cruel husband, she was then thrown into jail — accused of being an enemy agent because she spoke English. While there she not only experienced appalling deprivations and bore witness to hideous torture, but was completely isolated from her young daughter.

Moving, shocking, and always compelling, this is the tale of someone who survived against unbelievable odds, and finally found a happiness she had not dared to hope for. It is a ‘must read’ for anyone interested in Chinese history.

Praise for To the Edge of the Sky:

’An authentic survivor’s story, more disturbing and awe-inspiring than any TV reality show.’ – Kirkus Reviews

‘I would highly recommend this to anyone interested in China around 1940s–1990s. I learned a lot and came away with a better understanding of what China was like, both during and after the Chinese Revolution and Cultural Revolution.’ – Library Thing

To the Edge of the Sky explores the depth of human existence in hardship, and it does it in such a down to earth way that you won’t be able to pry yourself away. I stayed up to read it.’ – Avalinah’s Books

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