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Book fans embark on novel quest
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  • http://english.dbw.cn   2015-08-18 09:17:36
     

    Over the past fortnight, more than 50,000 book fans, the majority teenage girls, have descended upon the Changbai mountain range.

    These hardcore fans, however, are not kitted-out in gear appropriate for mountain climbing, they are dressed in matching T-shirts, carrying placards and talking about a mysterious door.

    "The Grave Robbers' Chronicles" is a nine-part novel series by Xu Lei. It follows the adventures of Wu Xie, a tomb raider, and his uncle.

    It is the cliffhanger of book nine, which in the fictional world ends on on Aug. 17, 2005, that prompted diehard fans to undertake their literary pilgrimage. The final book ends with Wu's friend, Kylin Zhang, disappearing through a bronze door in the mountain to protect his family's secret. Kylin tells Wu to come and take his place on the same day, 10 years later, which was Monday.

    "I know the book is not real, but that hasn't stopped me counting down the days to this visit," said Wu Chulei, a Beijing high school student.

    The mountain range, which borders China and the Democratic People's Republic of Korea, attracts a huge number of tourists from home and abroad every year.

    Following reports of fans flocking to Changbai Mountains, Xu Lei appealed to his fans on Sina Weibo to change their travel plans to avoid accidents or causing damage to the environment.

    Thousands of fans, however, were not to be dissuaded, and turned up wearing matching blue T-shirts emblazoned with the English word "Muse," which is a character in Kylin's name in the original Chinese version. While others came dressed as their favorite character.

    The fans happily walked a special route organized by the local government, proudly carrying banners reading "See you in Changbai Mountains" and "It's time to go home Kylin Zhang." The motley crew were a sharp contrast to the mountain's usual visitors.

    "We did't come to enjoy the scenery. We came to experience the mysterious atmosphere described in the novel. It's a kind of spiritual pursuit," Wu told Xinhua.

    Not everyone shares the fans' passion. One visitor, surnamed Lei, told Xinhua that lots of girls were shouting around the Tianchi, or Heavenly Lake.

    "I don't understand why they confuse real life with fiction," Lei complained.

    However, Weibo user Laohuya, a fan of the series, hit back at the killjoys and said fans were not mixing real life with Xu Lei's fictional world. He said that many fans liked the series because it reminded them of their youth.

    "Right from the first page, you enter into another world without worries and troubles," he said.

    Since the first "The Grave Robbers' Chronicles" book was published in 2007, it has amassed millions of fans in China.

    The series has been translated into English and was published last year. It was also made into a TV series, which premiered in June, and production on a movie is scheduled in September.

    Wu Chulei showed Xinhua a postcard she had bought as a keepsake of the visit. She hopes to find a boyfriend like the main male characters in the novel.

    "I know they're fictional. But I believe that I can find the right person who will never give up when facing challenges and can encourage me to move forward in life," she said.

    Author:    Source: xinhua     Editor: Yang Fan

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