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The Library of Legends

(2020)
A novel by

 
 
The Library of Legends is a gorgeous, poetic journey threaded with mist and magic about a group from a Chinese university who take to the road to escape the Japanese invasion of 1937 – only to discover that danger stalks them from within. Janie Chang pens pure enchantment!”  Kate Quinn, New York Times and USA Today bestselling author of The Alice Network and The Huntress

From the author of Three Souls and Dragon Springs Road comes a captivating historical novel—the third in a loosely-connected trilogy—in which a young woman travels across China with a convoy of student refugees, fleeing the hostilities of a brutal war with Japan.

“Myths are the darkest and brightest incarnations of who we are…”

China, 1937: When Japanese bombs begin falling on the city of Nanking, nineteen-year-old Hu Lian and her classmates at Minghua University are ordered to flee. Lian and a convoy of more than a hundred students, faculty, and staff must walk a thousand miles to the safety of China’s western provinces, a journey marred by hunger, cold, and the constant threat of aerial attack. And it is not just the student refugees who are at risk: Lian and her classmates have been entrusted with a priceless treasure, a 500-year-old collection of myths and folklore known as the Library of Legends.

Her family’s past has made Lian wary of forming attachments, but the students’ common duty to safeguard the Library of Legends forms unexpected bonds. Lian finds friendship and a cautious romance with the handsome and wealthy Liu Shaoming. But after one classmate is murdered and another arrested, Lian realizes she must escape from the convoy before a family secret puts her in danger. Accompanied by Shao and the enigmatic maidservant Sparrow, Lian makes her way to Shanghai, hoping to reunite with her mother.

On the journey, Lian learns of the connection between her two companions and a tale from the Library of Legends, The Willow Star and the Prince. Learning Shao and Sparrow’s true identities compels Lian to confront her feelings for Shao. But there are broader consequences too, for as the ancient books travel across China, they awaken immortals and guardian spirits to embark on an exodus of their own, one that changes the country’s fate forever.

Based on true events, rich in Chinese history and lore, The Library of Legends is both an illuminating exploration of China’s recent past and an evocative tale of love, sacrifice, and the extraordinary power of storytelling.

Genre: Historical

Praise for this book

"Vibrant, rich, and moving, The Library of Legends brings an unusual true episode in Chinese history to shimmering, heartfelt life." - Yangsze Choo

"The Library of Legends is a luminous and enthralling story set during a pivotal period in the making of modern China and highlights the Chinese determination to preserve their culture by saving precious historical treasures at great sacrifice. The exploits of historical characters and ancient mythological beings are interwoven in a blend of wonder, courage, and suspense." - Margaret George

"Janie Chang's The Library of Legends delivers stark historical truths on the tail of a shooting star. Absolutely enchanting." - Ana Johns

"Janie Chang's The Library of Legends is a delicious mix of history, myth and romance. Chang deftly intertwines Chinese folklore and historical detail to create a magical, heartfelt read." - Jean Kwok

"The Library of Legends is a gorgeous, poetic journey threaded with mist and magic about a group from a Chinese university who take to the road to escape the Japanese invasion of 1937 – only to discover that danger stalks them from within. Janie Chang pens pure enchantment!" - Kate Quinn

"Janie Chang has done it again with this story of an exodus of young students treasured as China’s future intermingled with an imaginary, unconventional departure of mystical beasts and legendary deities during a war that changes China forever. Evocative, unforgettable, The Library of Legends is truly out of this world!" - Weina Dai Randel

"Janie Chang has beautifully melded history and the spirit world to create an adventurous love story for all of us readers who love books and who, in a perfect world, would do anything to save them." - Lisa See

"Atmospheric and beautifully told, Janie Chang has woven a tale that tugs on the threads of China's history and legend alike. Readers will find themselves immersed in this story of love amidst war, hope amidst sacrifice." - Stephanie Marie Thornton

"Janie Chang brings wartime China to life in The Library of Legends, imbuing her characters with the same epic qualities they find in the mythic figures that follow them on their journey to safety. Moving smoothly between historical fiction and magic realism, this is a beautifully written story of love, hope, and courage." - Bryn Turnbull


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Used availability for Janie Chang's The Library of Legends

Paperback Editions

May 2020 : USA Paperback
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Title: The Library of Legends: A Novel
Author(s): Janie Chang
ISBN: 0-06-285150-0 / 978-0-06-285150-5 (USA edition)
Publisher: William Morrow Paperbacks
Availability: Amazon   Amazon UK   Amazon AU   


April 2020 : Canada Paperback
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Title: The Library of Legends: A Novel
Author(s): Janie Chang
ISBN: 1-4434-5605-5 / 978-1-4434-5605-0 (Canada edition)
Publisher: HarperAvenue
Availability: Amazon   Amazon CA   


Audio Editions

May 2020 : Audio CD
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Title: The Library of Legends
Author(s): Janie Chang
ISBN: 1-09-415726-0 / 978-1-09-415726-9
Publisher: Blackstone Pub
Availability: Amazon   Amazon UK   Amazon CA   Amazon AU   


May 2020 : Audio CD
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Title: The Library of Legends: A Novel
Author(s): Janie Chang
ISBN: 1-09-415725-2 / 978-1-09-415725-2
Publisher: HarperCollins B and Blackstone Publishing
Availability: Amazon   Amazon UK   Amazon CA   Amazon AU   


May 2020 : Audio CD
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Title: The Library of Legends: Library Edition
Author(s): Janie Chang
ISBN: 1-09-415724-4 / 978-1-09-415724-5
Publisher: Blackstone Pub
Availability: Amazon UK   Amazon CA   


May 2020 : USA Audio edition
thumb

Title: The Library of Legends: A Novel
Author(s): Janie Chang
Publisher: HarperAudio
Availability: Amazon   


May 2020 : Australia Audio edition
thumb

Title: The Library of Legends: A Novel
Author(s): Janie Chang
Publisher: HarperAudio
Availability: Amazon AU   


May 2020 : Canada Audio edition
thumb

Title: The Library of Legends: A Novel
Author(s): Janie Chang
Publisher: HarperCollins Publishers
Availability: Amazon CA   


May 2020 : UK Audio edition
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Title: The Library of Legends: A Novel
Author(s): Janie Chang
Publisher: HarperAudio
Availability: Amazon UK   


Kindle Editions

May 2020 : USA, Australia, UK Kindle edition
thumb

Title: The Library of Legends: A Novel
Author(s): Janie Chang
Publisher: William Morrow Paperbacks
Availability: Amazon   Amazon UK   Amazon AU   


April 2020 : Canada Kindle edition
thumb

Title: The Library of Legends: A Novel
Author(s): Janie Chang
Publisher: HarperAvenue
Availability: Amazon CA