In the midst of the Japanese occupation of China and Hong Kong, two lives become intertwined: Wong Chia Chi, a young student active in the resistance, and Mr. Yee, a powerful political figure who works for the Japanese occupational government. As these two move deftly between Shanghai’s tea parties and secret interrogations, they become embroiled in the complicated politics of wartime—and in a mutual attraction that may be more than what they expected. Written in lush, lavish prose, and with the tension of a political thriller, Lust, Caution brings 1940s Shanghai artfully to life even as it limns the erotic pulse of a doomed love affair.
Now a major motion picture from Oscar-winning director Ang Lee (Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon, Brokeback Mountain): an intensely passionate story of love and espionage, set in Shanghai during World War II.
“A dazzling and distinctive fiction writer.”
—New York Times Book Review
“Chang’s sensual writing has elements of both China and the United States; the smoky, formal world of respect for tradition and the irresistible, harshly lighted future.”
—Los Angeles Times
“A master of the short story.... Chang’s world is a stark and mysterious place where people strive to find their way in love but often fail under the pressures of family, tradition, and reputation.”
—The New Yorker
“Chang has strong and sensuous power of description.... Her stories could hardly be more eloquent.”
—New York Review of Books
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Eileen Chang (1920-1995) was born in Shanghai. She studied literature in Hong Kong but returned to Shanghai in 1941 during the Japanese occupation, where she published two works, Romances (1944) and Written on Water (1945) that established her reputation as a literary star. She moved to America in 1955, where she continued to write. She died in Los Angeles in 1995.