Cha, Louis.
          Jin Yong

Chinese astrologers have named an asteroid after Jin Yong, better known as Louis Cha, a Hong Kong-based writer of kung fu novels and one of the world's best-selling authors, state media said Saturday. ... ...

Louis Cha, one of the world's best known Chinese authors, says he is rewriting all 15 of his highly popular novels to iron out the kinks and refine the plots.

Book and Sword

In the Book and Sword, Louis Cha revives the legend about the great eighteenth-century Manchu Emperor Qianlong which claims that he was in fact not a Manchu but a Han Chinese as a result of a "baby swap." The novel is panoramic in scope and includes the fantastical elements for which Cha is well-known: secret societies, kungfu masters, a lost desert city guarded by wolf packs, and the mysterious Fragrant Princess.

The Deer and the Cauldron
The Second Book, Vol. 2
by Louis Cha,
Translated by John Minford
Oxford University Press , cloth , 596 pages
Due/Published: June 2000
Price: $35.00

The Deer and the Cauldron
The First Book
by Louis Cha and Yung Chin,
Translated by John Minford
Oxford University Press , cloth , 596 pages
Due/Published: June 2000

Love In Louis Cha's Novels
*Written by Linda

It may have occurred to everyone already that all of Louis Cha's novels concern 'everlasting love' but has anyone ever noticed that it is always, and I repeat always, the male who has love problems because he is in love or likes more then one girl at a time? And also, let's say if their lover died or left for a very long time, the guys can seem to move on but the girls can't. If a guy was in love with a girl and she doesn't love him back, he'll be sad for a while then move on, but in Louis Cha's stories, if a girl was in love with a guy, and he doesn't love her, she'll NEVER move on, she'll always be sad--that's just so unfair.

Mind the language, but I totally think that Louis Cha is so so so BIASED. If his stories just came out now, I would have charged him with Gender Discrimination. This can be seen in almost every single one of his novels, and he only wrote 11.

'The Legend of the Condor Heroes' (LOCH)- (I'm Viet so I call characters by their Viet names) Quach Tinh (the main good guy) had three girls totally in love with him (in the book). One was the princess Hoa Trang, who even if she knew that he didn't love her, still loved him and stay singled for the rest of her life for him. Hoang Dung (leading female), needless to say she married him so she still loved him. Duong Qua's, (main character for "The Condor Lovers") mother (in the book, they changed it, he had a different mother, not Moc Niem Tu who was in love with the main evil guy in LOCH) was in love with Quach Tinh, and although he knew that he didn't love her, she still loved him to the very end. And lastly, Moc Niem Tu, she was so in love with Duong Khang that when he died she committed suicide (in the book), but on the other hand the guys weren't like that.

I know that Quach Tinh only loved Hoang Dimg but what about Duong Khang, he loved Moc Niem Tu, but when he realised that she isn't going to be with him unless he left all his riches and kill his adopted father, he decided that he didn't love her any more, so he went and liked Duong Qua's real mother, Tan Nam Cam. Like hello, how can girls be totally in love with one guy, and not be allowed to love anyone else but the guys can change so quickly?

'Legend of the Condor Lovers'- Ok, now let's start counting how many girls were in love with Duong Qua:

1. Tieu Long Nu (main leading female character)

2. Hoang Nhan Binh (this girl at the start wanted to kill this guy but couldn't defeat him and Duong Qua help her, but she ended up not killing the guy anyway, she couldn't bring herself to do it because the only reason he lost to her is because he tried to stop her from committing suicide)

3. Luc Vo Song (this is the girl that had a limp)
4. Trinh Anh (Luc Vo Song's cousin, she is the disciple of West Weirdo Hoang Dung's father)

5. Cong Ton Luc Ngac (she is the daughter of the guy that lives in the cave who tried to force Tieu Long Nu to marry him, she died at the end)

Five girls were in love with Duong Qua, and guess what? They still loved him till the very end of the film. Tieu Long Nu, even with 16 years of separation, still maintained her love for him. Nguyen Nhan Binh, although did have a little fling with Vo Don Nho (one of the two guys who is in love with Quach Phu, Hoang Dung's daughter) she was just doing that to make Duong Qua jealous, but it didn't work so she stayed single for the rest of her life. Luc Vo Song and Trinh Anh both loved him and never ever even looked at another guy. Both stayed single for the rest of their lives. And Cong Ton Luc Ngac, she was the worse, she loved him so much that she even lied to her mother, stripped naked in front of her father to protect him. And she died at the end, but she still loved him. On the other hand, Vo Don Nho and Vo Tu VAn (the two brothers who was fighting over Quach PHu) both were in love with Quach Phu, but seeing that she did not love them, they both went looking for other loves, one went with Gia Luc Yen, one had a fling with Hoang Nhan Binh. That is just so unfair, all the girls had to stay in love with the same guy, but all the guys can fall in love with anyone whenever they wish.

'The Smiling Proud Wanderer'- Lenh Ho Xuan (the main guy) is at first in love with Nhac Linh Sanh (his little kung fu sister) but when she doesn't love him, he goes and loves Nham Doanh Doanh (the girl from the evil sect). Whereas Nham Doanh Doanh is in love with him and always will be. Nghi Lam (the monk girl) who was also in love with him was still in love with him till the end.

'The Demi Gods and Semi Devil'--o my god, did i hate Doan Du (the prince in one of the three main guys) or what. Moc Uyen Thanh (the girl in black who Doan Du met at the start) and Chunh Linh (a girl he met at the start then was both captured, she told him to go find her parents in that cave, where if you wanted to go in you must hit the word Doan) were both in love with him and stayed single for the rest of their lives for him. If anyone had read the book, they would have noticed that Doan Du was in love with Moc Uyen Thanh first but he didn't think she was the prettiet girl in the world therefore didn't want to marry her, he actually said that a man should marry the most beautiful woman for them not to waste their life. There's a saying that if there is no love there is no jealousy, that was expressed in much of Louis Cha's novels, and in this novel Doan Du was actually jealous because of Moc Uyen Thanh, therefore he must love her. But no, he went after Duong Ngoc Yen (the pretty girl who loved her cousin first then turn to love Doan Du). I have to say, Duong Ngoc Yen is the only girl that's ever changed her mind in love.

'Duke of Mount Dear'-- this is the worse one yet. i don't believe that a guy can be in love with more then one girl at a time, let alone seven. In actual fact, he didn't love the Princess, it was only because she was pregnant with his child and didn't let him go that's why he married her. But all seven were in love with him (except for the Wife of the leader of that evil sect) and they stayed loyal to him.

In conclusion, it is so unfair that Louis Cha's novel always makes the female be the one who understands the words 'everlasting love', it is on rare occasions that you find a guy who understands it too. That is why I find that if Louis Cha is going to write more stories, let him see the fact that we women aren't always going to be the one waiting for you men to turn around. Love is a two way thing, if it's a one way street, then let us do a u-turn.

Kung Fu Novelist Returns To Early Works

For many kung fu novel lovers, the works of Hong Kong writer Louis Cha, or Jin Yong, are the best.

Now the best selling martial arts novelist is reported to be rewriting some of his early works, altering the fates of some characters to reflect changes in his views.

Local newspapers say Cha has already released a revised version of his 1955 first novel ďThe Books and the SwordĒ last week.

And two other novels, "The Eagle-shooting Heroes" and "The Sword Stained with Royal Blood," are due for re-release soon.

Some sections in the first novel have been rewritten to change protagonist Chen Jia-luo's understanding of the Muslim holy book, the Koran.

The 78-year-old Cha told the Apple Daily newspaper that he started rewriting his novels to reflect his changing perspective and to improve their style and content.

He also wanted to answer questions readers had raised about the eventual fate of some characters.

Chaís works have sold millions in Chinese markets. He stopped writing new books in 1972.


The Life of a Learned Warrior

Jin Yong, a Hong Kong writer, enjoys wide popularity and loyalty among his readers, he is already a household name on the mainland. Today, weíll be sampling one of his works.

Head Helmsman Chen Jialuo went to West Lake that day for some relaxation. He brought along with him only his young page Xin Moshi.

Head Helmsman Chen had been to West Lake several times before in his youth. On those trips its exquisite charm had passed rather unnoticed, but now on this trip he was beginning to appreciate fully the sight of the hills, the mood of the waters, the colors and forms of the flowers and the tenderness of the willows.

After enjoying the scenery for half a day, Chen and his page rented a horse cart to take them to see Feilai Peak at Lingyin. Almost five hundred meters high, the peak was solid rock from its foot right up to the summit. Trees growing from cracks were twisted and gnarled in strange shapes. Sharp rock formations protruded in all directions. Some seemed like great broken fangs while other huge boulders seemed precariously balanced. It was an awesome sight.

Inspired by the scene, Chen said to Xin Moshi, ďLetís go up there and have a look.

There was no path to the peak, but since they had both mastered the special, levitational skills of qinggong, they made themselves nearly weightless and lightly strolled right up, chatting as they went and reaching the top in no time at all.

Looking up, they could see the three Tianzhu peaks and thousands of tall trees stretching skyward. It was as serene as it was sublime. The two of them then moved on from Feilai Peak, up toward the three Tianzhu peaks. On their way, they time and again encountered martial artists wearing the same kind of blue cotton robes. And every one of them stared in surprise as soon as they looked at Chen. Chen and his page were puzzled, Could it be that there was a meeting of some branch of martial arts school or some gathering of a secret society? But Hongzhou is their territory, so anyone coming here for such a meeting would first have to clear it with the Redflower Society.

As they came around a bend and headed toward the Goddess of Mercy Temple on the uppermost peak, they heard the clear sounds of a stringed instrument, someone chanting, and the soft murmur of a gentle waterfall. As they drew closer, they were able to make out the words of the chanting:

(Emperor Qianlong M1 and Chen Jialuo M2)

M1: ÖIn this magnificent land, there is a fine gentleman.

He rules the land by establishing rules and regulations.

Good men of literature and music,

From every direction come to pay tribute.

All longing to serve His grace.

The common people herald the arrival of his imperial chariot.

Banners of wine shops flutter in the breeze in village after village

Peace and prosperity, tranquility and joy.

From the imperial incense burner, calmly rise billows of auspicious mistÖ.

Chen found the music calm and elegantly graceful, but the lyrics were nothing but fawning paeans to the emperor.

Chen followed the sound of the music and soon came to a man plucking a zither. He was dressed in the attire of a gentleman, around forty years of age, and standing next to him were two powerfully built men and a shriveled, older man. They all wore blue cotton robes.

Chen was startled, for he seemed to know the refined and elegant man with the zither. The more he looked at him, the more Chen was convinced they had met somewhere before, and yet he couldnít remember where.

Just then both the old man and the two ďbodyguardsĒ noticed Chen and his page. Instinctively the three men who were standing took a sudden step forward as if to protect the elegant zither player who, without warning drew three fingers across the strings bringing the music to an abrupt halt. Chen bowed to the man saying:

M2: I heard you playing. The tune is new to me. Was it something youíd just composed?

M1: Yes, quite so. The piece is called Magnificent Land. I wrote it just recently. You seem to know music well. Please give me the benefit of your knowledge.

M2: Such superb music! Excellent indeed! The line, ĎBanners of wine shops flutter in the breeze in village after villageí is especially vivid.

M1: So you even remember the lyrics. Come, join me please. Here, have a seat.

M2: On my way up here, I met quite a few travellers. When they saw me they all showed some sign of surprise. Now you too have just done the same. Is there something so unusual about my face?

M1: What you donít know is that I happen to have a relative who resembles you very much. All those travellers you saw are my friends. They all know my relative, which is why they were surprised.

M2: So thatís it! But equally curious is that you, too, look familiar to me! I believe I have met you somewhere before. Iím so foolish I cannot seem to recall where. Do you by any chance have any recollection of our having met before?

M1: It must be that you and I are predestined to become good friends. May I know your name?

Head Helmsman Chen Jialuo was very well known in this area, so he was unwilling under the circumstances to reveal his true identity. Instead, he made up a name by reversing the order of his real one. The emperor, meanwhile, also gave a pseudonym.

M2: My family name is Luo and my given name is Jiachen. And the honorable gentlemenís name?

M1: I have a two-syllable last name, Dongfang, and my given name is Er, so itís Dongfang Er. Iím from Zhili. Judging from your accent, you are native to this area.

M2: True, Iím a native of this very city.

M1: I have long heard that the scenery here is unsurpassed. Now, Iíve come to see for myself and I must say that itís true to its reputation.

M2: If you are so fond of this place you should settle here for a while. That way I would have a chance to learn from you.

M1: I am already neglecting my duties by journeying down here in pursuit of pleasure. > It has not escaped my notice that you are a learned man. You also know music well, so you must be good at playing the zither. Will you please play for us?

Chen plucked the strings gently. The sound was incredibly clear and crisp. As he examined the zither, he found that it was of a rare, antique quality. He was awed by this priceless treasure and wondered where this man could have come by such a rare object.

M2: You played so beautifully that I will only seem coarse by comparison, but if you insist, Iíll indulge myself with a little song.

The piece Chen played was called Wild Geese Alighting in Pingsha. The emperor listened with rapt attention. And then when the music ended he said to Chen:

M1: When you played that piece the melody was so expansive, so grand and heroic that I felt you were brilliantly expressing the vastness of the wide-open spaces. As I listened, I actually found myself transported to the desert. In my lifetime, Iíve heard this piece played more than ten times, but never quite like this.

Something puzzles me and Iíd like to find an answer to it, but you and I have only just met, so Iím afraid my inquiry may cause you to take offense.

M2: Please, go ahead and ask. I donít mind, really.

M1: I could detect in your performance a subtle expression of the strength of a powerful warrior. Yet, judging by your appearance, youíre a well-bred gentleman of refinement, not a fierce general who leads solders into battle. I just canít quite reconcile my feeling with the image you present.

So Emperor Qianlong asked about Chen Jialuoís family background. Chen replied that he was just a bookworm who came from an ordinary family. During their conversation they kept sizing each other up, but each felt that the other was out of the ordinary. They were unsure of each other, yet couldnít help being drawn closer by mutually strong and positive feelings.

When talking about the disaster victims at Lanfeng who stole food supplies from the army that the emperor had sent out on the western campaign, they expressed different views.

M2: I believe the peopleís behavior was totally understandable. The victims were in desperate need of food and clothing. The government hadnít shown any sympathy, nor was any aid provided.

M1: But I was told the Redflower Society was behind the whole thing. It was they who incited the peasants to commit the crimes and provoked them to riot.

M2: What is the Redflower Society?

M1: Itís a secret society that conspires against the state. When the imperial court learns of it, Iím sure action will be taken to punish this society severely.

M2: How can you be so sure?

M1: At present, the emperor is virtuous; the government is honest and enlightened. The government merely needs to dispatch a few skilful people and the Redflower Society will be eliminated easily.

M2: Please forgive me if I speak out of turn since I know nothing about government, but according to my understanding, people in the imperial court are nothing more than rice bags and wine flasksóloafers of the highest degree. I donít see how they can be expected to accomplish anything worthwhile.

At this, the emperor Qianlong, the two big fellows and the older man all changed countenance.

M1: Well, that would be the view of a pedant, I suppose, but let me tell you that there is actually a large contingent of excellent military and administrative people at the imperial court. Even my friends here are talented far beyond the average man. But of course, youíre a man of letters. If only you understood martial arts, Iíd ask them to demonstrate a little of their skill. Then youíd realize what Iím talking about.

M2: Please, it would be an honor to see something of their skill.

One of the big fellows pointed at a magpie up in the tree saying that it had been annoying him with its chatter. So he flicked his wrist slightly and an arrow shot out of his sleeve toward the magpie high in the tree. But somehow, before it reached the bird it changed course and missed it entirely. The emperor was surprised his bodyguard had missed. The guard was very embarrassed. Immediately he flicked a second arrow toward the bird. This time everybody was watching intently. Just before the arrow reached its target they saw a tiny clod of dirt knock it off course.

The thin, dried-up older man standing next to the emperor noticed that Xin Moshiís right hand had moved slightly. He decided it must be some action of his that had foiled the arrow. ďMy little brother, I see you have a great talent. Let us make your acquaintance,Ē said the old man to the boy, stretching his talon-like fingers toward Xin Moshi. Chen immediately recognized the old man to be from Songyang School. His special skill would be the Power Eagle Talons. When he stretched out his hands, although they didnít appear to move with any great swiftness, one could feel the swish of air they created in their wake. This man surpassed all in his particular specialty. He had to be the chief of the school. If that were the case, why was he serving a fellow like Dongfang? While these thoughts were going through his mind he had instinctively snapped open the folding fan in his hand to strategically place it between the old man and Xin Moshi. The old man quickly withdrew his hands. He didnít dare ruin Chenís fan because his master was showing so much respect to Chen that such damage would be considered highly discourteous.

M1: Your page is so young and yet heís so skillful. Where on earth did you find him?

M2: He knows nothing of martial arts at all. The only thing he knows is how to aim at a target. His petty little skills were acquired catching insects and birds.

Emperor Qianlong knew he was not telling the truth.

M1: I see you have an elegant folding fan. Who inscribed it for you? May I have a look?

Ah, the lyrics by Nalan Xingde are inscribed on it. He was the son of a Prime Minister and was himself a palace official. The quality of the calligraphy and the lyrics on this fan are beyond compare. A lesser person than you would not deserve to use it. May I ask where you obtained such a remarkable treasure?

M2: It was by chance in a bookstore. I bought it for ten pieces of gold.

M1: Cultural treasures like this are mostly handed down within a family from generation to generation. Your being able to obtain it so casually and at such a low price has to be a once-in-a-lifetime miracle.

The hearty laugh that followed told Chen that Dongfang didnít believe his story. Chenís only response was to smile. As the emperor couldnít bear to part from him just yet, he still wanted to probe his mind and learn something of his temperament. Turning the fan over, he saw that there was no inscription on the other side.

M1: Iím very fond of this fan. I wonder if you might consider giving it to me?

M2: If it pleases you, by all means, take it.

M1: May I ask you write something here for me to remember you by? Where is your lodging? Can I have my people fetch it tomorrow?

M2: If you donít consider my writing worthless, Iíll write it right here and now.

Chen had Xin Moshi open a bag and take out the writing instruments. He pondered a bit and then wrote a poem on the fan:

(M2) I roamed over the western sands

With my books and my swords.

I made my home wherever I roamed

Tall mountains, broad seas.

When the west wind blew in the desert

And the green birds took to their wings,

In the eighth month, I came to the south

To enjoy the sweet osmanthus blossoms.

The old man with the Eagle Talons, seeing that Chen had brought with him writing instruments and was quick at composing poetry, no longer suspected he was a man of martial arts. Emperor Qianlong thanked Chen for the fan, and taking the old zither with both his hands, placed it in front of Chen, saying:

M1: I, too, have something to give you as a present. Thereís an old expression that says Ďa precious sword should always be given to the one who is a hero. Here, you deserve this.

Chen knew very well that this zither was a rare treasure. He and Dongfang had met each other for the first time only today, and yet this person was giving him such a precious gift. Why? But then, since he himself was from a very prominent family and had seen many treasures in his life, he wasnít completely overwhelmed by such a precious gift. He merely expressed his gratitude and had Xin Moshi carry it away in his arms. The two of them continued to chat at length, but they were still unable to fully take each otherís measure. Neither could discern who the other was. Rising slightly, the emperor then said to Chen:

M1: Should there come a day in the future when you need my help for some reason, just take this zither to Beijing to look for me, Now, shall we go down the mountain together?

Updated at 2002/09/30 09:57