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Annals of the Purple City

In a Portuguese colony on the south coast of China a beautiful Australian woman gradually achieves her own freedom and integrity through her relationships with four men: her indifferent English husband, her deeply sensual Eurasian lover, an expatriate Hong Kong homosexual dropout and an aged Chinese millionaire. The interplay of personalities is woven into the social and political fabric of a splendid antique city which itself provides the gateway for all the characters to a deeper level of reality: the Purple City, the mystical city which is hidden in all of us. The story fuses the Latin and Chinese elements which characterises the Portuguese presence in China and provides insights into the emotional lives of a variety of people when east and west meet. Though a novel in the Western sense it also employs features of Chinese classical fiction in terms of intriguing subplots, use of dreams and poetry and scenes of heightened reality. With its rich erotic, political and mystical undertones, this is a book that will appeal to all with interest in the intersection of Asia and The West.
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About the Author

Frederick Lees was born in 1924 and studied at Liverpool and London Universities. His interest in Arthurian studies began in his university days and his well-known Arthuriad represents many years of research into the early Dark Age period. But the book is enhanced by his personal experience of social ferment, political rivalries and ambitious leaders in situations ranging from the sophisticated modern states of South East Asia through the court life of Malay sultanates to the religious conflicts of the Sudan and the tribal wars of Papua New Guinea. His deep understanding of human motivation has enabled him, on the foundation of Catumandus' memoirs, to transmute 5th and 6th centuries AD Britain from an age of legend into a real world that is both harsh and beautiful. Lees' command of the English language, which at times soars to the poetic, is amply demonstrated in the Annals of the Purple City, a novel of east-west human relationships rich in erotic and mystical elements. It was inspired by a sojourn in the early nineteen fifties in Macao where he studied Chinese. Those elements are also present in the Arthuriad. A trilogy of novels, The Malayan Life of Ferdach O'Haney, encapsulates much of Lees' Malayan experience. His most recent novel, The Rape of Rye, describes contemporary social life in the historic Sussex town where Lees and his wife now live.

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