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Head of Zeus
Wuhan by John Fletcher

A multi-stranded historical epic set in China in 1937, when Wuhan stood alone against a whirlwind of war and violence.

Everyone's heard of Wuhan in connection with Covid-19. But 80 years ago it was equally famous as the first place on earth to decisively defeat fascism.

In 1937 Japan invaded China, slaughtering 20 million Chinese – mainly civilians. As vast swathes of the country fell to the invaders, Wuhan was appointed wartime capital and symbol of Chinese resistance. China, a medieval society, began a desperately needed reorganisation – transforming itself militarily, educationally, medically and culturally.

Their heroic efforts in Wuhan halted the Japanese.

Weaving together a multitude of narratives, Wuhan is a historical fiction epic that pulls no punches: the heart-in-mouth story of a peasant family forced onto a thousand-mile refugee death-march; the story of Lao She – China's greatest writer – leaving his family in a war-zone to assist with the propaganda effort in Wuhan; the hellish battlefields of the Sino-Japanese war; the approaching global war seen through a host of colourful characters – from Chiang Kai-Shek, China's nationalist leader, to Peter Fleming, British journalist based in Wuhan and a prototype for his younger brother Ian Fleming's James Bond.

Head of Zeus * Historical Fiction
22 Jul 2021 * 608pp * £7.99 * 9781800249851
John Fletcher
John Fletcher
John Fletcher is a Neoplatonist and an anarcho-syndicalist. Over the course of his life he has been many things, including a construction worker, a shepherd, a white van driver, a gravedigger, a steelworker, a cleaner, a teacher, a broadcast journalist, and a writer. Wuhan is his first novel.
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