A graphic memoir like no other: the true story of a marriage in China that spanned the twentieth century, told in vibrant, original paintings and prose.
WINNER OF AN ENGLISH PEN AWARD
Rao Pingru was a twenty-six-year-old soldier when he first saw the beautiful Mao Meitang. One glimpse of her through a window as she put on lipstick was enough to capture Pingru’s heart. It was a moment that sparked a union that would last almost sixty years.
But when Meitang passed away in 2008, Pingru realised that their marriage and all the small moments and memories of a life together, would be lost to history. And so at the age of eighty-eight, in an outpouring of love and grief, Pingru began to paint.
Our Story is a memorial to Pingru and Meitang’s epic romance, told through Pingru’s exquisitely detailed paintings and handwritten notes. We see Pingru and Meitang through the decades, through both poverty and good fortune, and as they grow so too does China: the nation undergoing political turmoil and seismic cultural change.
A tale both tragic and inspiring, of enduring love and simple values, Our Story is an old-fashioned romance that unfolds within the rush of a rapidly changing nation. A love letter, a work of folk art and a historical testament, Our Story is a truly unique graphic memoir.
'A beautifully warm, personal, human story of life, love and family' Forbidden Planet
"A deeply moving love letter… Almost every page is gorgeously illustrated with his enchanting, sometimes heartbreaking paintings"
"Pingru, [at age] 95, makes his literary debut with a charming memoir illustrated with his own evocative watercolors... A graceful, gently told narrative of contentment and resilience"
"Thanks to the persuasive power of its humane and humorous author, Our Story is as hard to resist as the great, rich, rambling serial narratives of the oral storytellers who travelled from one Chinese village to another"
"His pictures tell expressively of his talent for observation but also of his capacity for happiness… A wonderful book, full of energy and curiosity"
"A beautifully warm, personal, human story of life, love and family"