The White Ravens Database

Presented by   Internationale Jugendbibliothek / International Youth Library

Chinese / People's Republic of China

Huo yin

(The brand)

Cao, Wenxuan (text)
Beijing: Tian tian chu ban she (Daylight Publishing House), 2015. – 341 p.
ISBN 978-7-5016-0966-6

China  | History 1937-1945  | War  | Horse  | Branding

Reading age: 10+

White Ravens issue: 2015


This story is set during the War of Resistance against Japanese Aggression in China. Xue’er is a mare whom the boy Powa once saved from a pack of wolves and who ever since then has lived with them as a family member. When the Japanese military moves into the village, she is branded and forced to serve in the troop. Thus begins her bitter trial. The brand on her body becomes such a shame to her that she cannot even raise her head in front of the villagers, until one day, she finally gets her revenge in a somewhat heroic way. This novel is representative of Cao Wenxuan’s writing for children. His personalized style builds on linguistic subtlety, merging a romantic imagination with realistic narrative.