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HarperCollins presents Wuhan Diary, a first person account of COVID-19 outbreak, lockdown in China


HarperCollins presents Wuhan Diary,  a first person account of COVID-19 outbreak, lockdown in China
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HarperNonFiction has published Wuhan Diary: Dispatches from a Quarantined City by well-known Chinese literary writer Fang Fang. The ebook was published on 15th May and was followed closely by an audiobook, which released on 26th May. HarperNonFiction acquired UK and Commonwealth rights, the translator is Michael Berry. The book is a compilation of the author’s diary entries and social media posts that document 60 days of lockdown during the COVID-19 epidemic.

 On January 25, 2020, China had imposed a lockdown in Wuhan. It is at that juncture that Fang Fang began publishing an online diary. As the days and weeks passed, Fang Fang’s online posts gave voice to the fears, frustrations, anger, and hope of millions of fellow citizens, reflecting on the psychological impact of forced isolation, the role of the internet as both community lifeline and source of misinformation, and most tragically, the lives of neighbours and friends taken by the deadly virus.

A fascinating eyewitness account of events as they unfolded, Wuhan Diary captures the challenges of daily life and the changing moods and emotions of being quarantined without reliable information. Fang Fang finds solace in small domestic comforts and is inspired by the courage of friends, health professionals, and volunteers, as well as the resilience and perseverance of Wuhan’s nine million residents. But, by claiming the writer´s duty to record, she also speaks out against social injustice, abuse of power, and other problems that impeded the response to the epidemic and gets herself embroiled in online controversies because of it.

 Given that Fang Fang has documented what was the very starting days for this global pandemic in real-time, readers will be able to identify patterns and mistakes that many of the countries dealing with the novel coronavirus pandemic have later repeated. Fang Fang through this book aims to remind us that, in the face of the new virus, the plight of the citizens of Wuhan is not different from what anyone else is feeling at the moment.

The biggest takeaway from this book is this message: “The virus is the common enemy of humankind; that is a lesson for all humanity. The only way we can conquer this virus and free ourselves from its grip is for all members of humankind to work together.”

Blending the intimate and the epic, the profound and the quotidian, Wuhan Diary is a remarkable record of an extraordinary time.

 Wuhan Diary is to be translated into 15 languages.

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