During China's cultural revolution, young Guo Sheng's family is persecuted by the Red Guards and subjected to unspeakable violence. Brutal beatings and public humiliations become a daily occurrence. After the Revolution, Sheng falls in love with a boy from the other side: he and his family are Red Guard sympathisers. Her family is horrified. Years later the two meet again, but times have changed. Her beloved is not the man she thought he was.
In this poignant account of a woman's life, Guo Sheng's experiences are interwoven with rich stories of family members past and present. Throughout this often painful journey, Guo Sheng emerges as a woman of huge resilience and courage.