The Little Restaurant
Wang Anyi's short stories in The Little Restaurant illuminate the emotional and intellectual complexity of the lives of the multiple generations caught up in China. Some of her short stories describe the lives of young students caught up in the Cultural Revolution who were sent away to rural communities across China to be educated and tempered in a hard scrabble existence; other stories revolve around the seemingly quiet lives of ordinary citizens in the city of Shanghai.
In effortless language and with an eye for detail, she describes their simple physical existence and their complex interior lives. Her descriptions are realistic, affectionate and vivid yet somehow they remain evocative and haunting.