The Good Earth - book description from Amazon.com
The Good Earth is Buck’s classic story of Wang Lung, a Chinese peasant farmer, and his wife, O-lan, a former slave. With luck and hard work, the couple’s fortunes improve over the years: They are blessed with sons, and save steadily until one day they can afford to buy property in the House of Wang—the very house in which O-lan used to work. But success brings with it a new set of problems. Wang soon finds himself the target of jealousy, and as good harvests come and go, so does the social order. Will Wang’s family cherish the estate after he’s gone? And can his material success, the bedrock of his life, guarantee anything about his soul?
This book is so wonderful! It starts when Wang Lung was a young man, getting ready to be married. It follows Wang and his family through their lives - their hardships, successes, and good and bad decisions. It takes you into a time and place where you live and die by the elements - rains, floods, famine. The characters are unforgettable, their lives unimaginable, their story probably not so unique for that time period.