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The Good Earth

The Good Earth


by Pearl S. Buck

The Good Earth Chapter 5 Summary

  • Happy New Year! Wang Lung is busy putting lucky red paper on anything and everything in his house. O-lan is busy making mooncakes, and when everyone else sees them, they are super impressed. 
  • O-lan did work in the kitchen of the House of Hwang, after all, but Wang Lung and his dad are not used to such fancy stuff. Anyway, the cakes are not for them; they're for the Old Mistress at the court. 
  • Wang Lung doesn't even care about the New Year: he's just waiting to go to the House of Hwang and show off. He and O-lan go on the second day, with the cakes and their nicest clothes.
  • Just one year ago Wang Lung was bumbling in there as a poor farmer to get his wife. Now he's rich enough to hide silver in his walls, and he's got a new baby boy. 
  • This time, the gatekeeper treats Wang Lung like a celebrity. Wang Lung enjoys all of this and puts on airs, while O-lan and the baby go to meet the Old Mistress.  
  • It seems like there has been a recession at the House of Hwang: people are wearing last year's clothes, and that's not a good sign. Turns out that they are not too thrifty over in the House of Hwang, and they need to sell their land to keep up with expenses. 
  • Wang Lung then has a great idea: he'll buy the land. O-lan is not so sure that this is a good idea at first, but he wins her over. They will buy the land of the great and mighty House of Hwang.

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