Chinese Studies

We gathered this collection to showcase China’s extensive literary history, from the writings of Confucius during the Zhou Dynasty (BCE) to contemporary, award-winning works by Amy Tan and Kelly Yang. Read on to discover study guides that will help generate discussion about titles both by Chinese authors and about Chinese history and experiences.

Publication year 2006Genre Graphic Novel/Book, FictionThemes Identity: Race, Life/Time: Coming of Age, Society: ImmigrationTags Allegory / Fable / Parable, Coming of Age / Bildungsroman, Bullying, Race / Racism, History: Asian, Immigration / Refugee, Chinese Literature

American Born Chinese is a graphic novel published in 2006 by the American author and illustrator Gene Luen Yang. Through three interweaving stories that span from the 16th century to the present, the novel explores issues of Chinese American identity, anti-Asian racism, and assimilation. American Born Chinese is the first graphic novel to be nominated for a National Book Award. The novel also won both the Printz Award from the American Library Association and the... Read American Born Chinese Summary

Publication year -1Genre Book, NonfictionTags Asian Literature, Chinese Literature, Philosophy

The Analects is a text compiled of the remarks and conversations of the Chinese philosopher, Confucius, during the later years of his life (72-75 years old). The text, with its dialogues and reflections, takes place during the Warring States Period (475-222 BC)—a period of great turmoil and geopolitical restructuring when the vassals of the then incumbent sovereign (Zhou Dynasty) defected and declared themselves independent of Zhou, thereby becoming kingdoms in their own right. It is... Read Analects of Confucius Summary

Publication year 2014Genre Book, NonfictionTags Chinese Literature, Asian Literature, Sociology

A Path Appears: Transforming Lives, Creating Opportunity is a nonfiction book published in 2014 by the husband-and-wife team of Nicholas D. Kristof and Sheryl WuDunn. The book speaks to altruism and how people can do something to promote more opportunities for others around the world. The authors declare, “We wrote this book mostly to encourage others—rich and poor alike—to join in this push to improve the world” (16). They promote three ways of doing so:... Read A Path Appears Summary

Publication year 2000Genre Novel, FictionThemes Values/Ideas: Literature, Emotions/Behavior: Memory, Life/Time: Coming of Age, Society: Politics & Government, Values/Ideas: Art, Values/Ideas: Safety & DangerTags Historical Fiction, Auto/Biographical Fiction, Chinese Literature

Balzac and the Little Chinese Seamstress (2000) is a short, semi-autobiographical novel by Dai Sijie. The narrative is set during the Chinese Cultural Revolution and follows two teenage boys who are sent to a remote mountain village for re-education. The boys become close with the local tailor’s daughter and uncover a hidden stash of forbidden Western literature. The books introduce them to ideas, emotions, and freedoms they have never known, and awaken in the Little... Read Balzac and the Little Chinese Seamstress Summary

Publication year 2021Genre Autobiography / Memoir, NonfictionThemes Life/Time: Coming of Age, Society: Immigration, Identity: Language, Values/Ideas: Safety & Danger, Relationships: Mothers, Relationships: Daughters & Sons, Identity: Race, Natural World: Food, Society: Education, Emotions/Behavior: Shame & Pride, Emotions/Behavior: Determination / PerseveranceTags Chinese Literature, Immigration / Refugee, Poverty, American Literature, Education

Publication year 1999Genre Autobiography / Memoir, NonfictionThemes Life/Time: Coming of Age, Relationships: Family, Emotions/Behavior: Conflict, Life/Time: Childhood & YouthTags Chinese Literature, History: Asian

Chinese Cinderella: The Secret Story of an Unwanted Daughter (1999) is the autobiography of Adeline Yen Mah and covers her experience growing up in an abusive household during a politically tumultuous era in Chinese history (1937-1952). Yen Mah, who now lives in the United States, made the decision to fulfill her childhood dreams of writing professionally after practicing medicine for several decades according to her father’s wishes. Chinese Cinderella is an abridged version of her... Read Chinese Cinderella Summary

Publication year 1918Genre Short Story, FictionThemes Society: Politics & Government, Society: Community, Natural World: Appearance & Reality, Emotions/Behavior: Fear, Identity: Mental Health, Emotions/Behavior: Apathy, Society: Nation, Values/Ideas: Power & Greed, Values/Ideas: Order & ChaosTags Classic Fiction, Allegory / Fable / Parable, Mental Illness, Chinese Literature, History: World

Lu Xun's "Diary of a Madman" was first published in China in 1918, during a period of significant cultural and political upheaval in the country. The Qin dynasty, in power since 1644, had recently collapsed from internal and external pressures in the 1912 Xinhai Revolution, marking a dramatic break from the past. New ideas about government, philosophy, and science prompted many Chinese intellectuals to reflect on long-held traditions and look toward a rebirth of the... Read Diary of a Madman Summary

Publication year 1760Genre Novel, FictionTags Classic Fiction, Asian Literature, Chinese Literature

The Story of the Stone, also known as The Dream of the Red Chamber, is one of the Four Great Classical Novels of China. Cáo Xuěqín wrote the work sometime in the 18th century, during the Qing dynasty—the last volume in the five-volume sequence was compiled and published many years later by Gao-E, who added additional chapters to complete the unfinished work. Many scholars consider the novel to be semi-autobiographical; Cáo Xuěqín was part of... Read Dream of the Red Chamber, Vol. 1 Summary

Publication year 2019Genre Short Story Collection, FictionThemes Emotions/Behavior: Grief, Values/Ideas: Fate, Emotions/Behavior: ForgivenessTags Chinese Literature, Asian Literature, Science-Fiction / Dystopian Fiction

Ted Chiang’s Exhalation is a collection of nine science fiction short stories. Published in 2019, the stories feature time travel, robots, artificial intelligences, and human beings grappling with an everchanging world. Seven of the nine stories appeared in previous publications, going on to win multiple Hugo, Nebula, and Locus awards. Through the science fiction genre, Exhalation explores forgiveness, parenting, technology ethics, free will, and climate change. This is Ted Chiang’s second collection, following Stories of... Read Exhalation Summary

Publication year 1997Genre Autobiography / Memoir, NonfictionTags Asian Literature, Chinese Literature, History: Asian

Falling Leaves is an autobiography by Chinese-American author, physician, and activist Adeline Yen Mah. Based on her traumatic childhood and her relationship with an abusive stepmother, as well as her later life in the United States and her troubled first marriage, Falling Leaves explores the Chinese concept of filial duty and the role of women in traditional Chinese culture. Detailing the broader sociocultural and economic changes that form the background of her family’s legacy—spanning from... Read Falling Leaves Summary

Publication year 2018Genre Novel, FictionTags Chinese Literature, Asian Literature, Realistic Fiction, Children's Literature

Front Desk is the debut novel of Asian-American author Kelly Yang. First published in 2018, the children’s book became a New York Times bestseller and was mentioned on multiple Best Books of the Year lists including NPR, Kirkus, Publishers Weekly, the Washington Post, Amazon, School Library Journal, the New York Public Library, and the Chicago Public Library. Front Desk also made ALA’s Booklist of the Top Ten Debut Novels of 2018. It won the 2019... Read Front Desk Summary

Publication year 2010Genre Novel, FictionThemes Values/Ideas: Music, Natural World: Appearance & RealityTags Chinese Literature, Asian Literature

Jean Kwok's Girl in Translation details the first decade of the lives of Kimberley Chang and her mother after they emigrate from Hong Kong to New York City in the 1980s. The novel is told from Kim's perspective. Each chapter corresponds roughly to a year of her life, beginning in early elementary school and ending shortly before Kim goes to college. Kim struggles as she attempts to balance her doublelife as a brilliant student during... Read Girl In Translation Summary

Publication year 2016Genre Book, NonfictionTags Chinese Literature, Asian Literature

Angela Duckworth’s best-selling 2016 book Grit: The Power of Passion and Perseverance describes how persistent practice, and not mere talent, is the key to success among students and professionals. Duckworth’s extensive research demonstrates that young people do best in activities that hold their interest and give them a sense of purpose. This encourages them to practice hard and overcome obstacles until they achieve mastery and success in school and, later, in their professional lives. The... Read Grit Summary

Publication year 2020Genre Novel, FictionThemes Natural World: Appearance & Reality, Relationships: Family, Identity: RaceTags Chinese Literature, Asian Literature, Historical Fiction, Western, Race / Racism, Immigration / Refugee

Publication year 1912Genre Short Story, FictionThemes Society: Immigration, Relationships: Family, Relationships: Mothers, Values/Ideas: EqualityTags Chinese Literature, Race / Racism

“In the Land of the Free” is the first short story written by British Canadian author Edith Maude Eaton, who was of British and Chinese descent. As one of the first Asian North American writers, her works explored themes of racial discrimination, the difficulties of assimilation, and the effects of the legal system on immigration and kinship. “In the Land of the Free,” originally published by the Montreal Daily Witness in 1890, explores the latter... Read In the Land of the Free Summary

Publication year 2023Genre Novel, FictionThemes Relationships: Mothers, Relationships: Friendship, Identity: Femininity, Relationships: Family, Emotions/Behavior: Determination / Perseverance, Emotions/Behavior: ConflictTags Chinese Literature, Historical Fiction

Publication year 2017Genre Novel, FictionThemes Relationships: MothersTags Chinese Literature, Asian Literature

Little Fires Everywhere is a New York Times bestselling novel by Celeste Ng published in 2017. In the town of Shaker Heights, Ohio, Elena Richardson rents her family’s property on Winslow Road to Mia and Pearl Warren, a mother and daughter duo who inspire her sense of charity. Mia is an artist, and her lack of rootedness and intense focus on her art unnerve Mrs. Richardson, who lives an orderly life. Their lives become further... Read Little Fires Everywhere Summary

Publication year 1943Genre Short Story Collection, FictionThemes Identity: Femininity, Emotions/Behavior: Love, Identity: Gender, Relationships: MarriageTags Chinese Literature, Historical Fiction, Love / Sexuality

Publication year -1Genre Book, NonfictionThemes Values/Ideas: Good & EvilTags Asian Literature, Chinese Literature, Philosophy

Mencius is a philosophical text based on the thought and teachings of fourth-century BCE Confucian Chinese philosopher Mencius, or Mengzi. According to the latest scholarship, written in the late fourth century BCE by Mencius’s disciples from notes on what Mencius said, it details conversations he had with various kings, rulers, and officials. These discussions cover a range of topics, from moral and political philosophy to human nature and selfhood. The following guide uses the translation... Read Mencius Summary

Publication year 1592Genre Novel, FictionTags Fantasy, Classic Fiction, Asian Literature, Chinese Literature

Monkey: Folk Novel of China is a 1943 translation by Arthur Waley of Wu Ch’êng-ên’s novel originally written in Chinese in the 16th century. This summary refers to the American edition. Wu’s original novel is more typically translated as Journey to the West in modern scholarship, and Waley’s translation excises considerable portions of the original story. While he keeps most of the first two parts intact (Monkey’s story and the origins of Tripitaka), the actual... Read Monkey: A Folk Novel of China Summary

Publication year 1990Genre Essay / Speech, NonfictionThemes Values/Ideas: Justice & InjusticeTags Race / Racism, Asian Literature, Chinese Literature

“Mother Tongue” explores Amy Tan’s relationship with the English language, her mother, and writing. This nonfiction narrative essay was originally given as a talk during the 1989 State of the Language Symposium; it was later published by The Threepenny Review in 1990. Since then, “Mother Tongue” has been anthologized countless times and won notable awards and honors, including being selected for the 1991 edition of Best American Essays.The original publication of “Mother Tongue,” which this... Read Mother Tongue Summary

Publication year 1912Genre Short Story Collection, FictionThemes Values/Ideas: BeautyTags Chinese Literature, Asian Literature

Edith Maude Eaton, who wrote under the pen name Sui Sin Far, wrote Mrs. Spring Fragrance in the late-19th and early-20th centuries. A Chicago press published the collection in 1912. Eaton, who is of Chinese-English heritage, was born in England and grew up in Canada. When she migrated to the western United States as an adult, Eaton penned her first published collection of short stories, Mrs. Spring Fragrance, which details the Asian-American experience. During the... Read Mrs Spring Fragrance Summary

Publication year 1997Genre Autobiography / Memoir, NonfictionThemes Relationships: Family, Values/Ideas: FateTags History: World, Asian Literature, Chinese Literature

Red Scarf Girl: A Memoir of the Cultural Revolution (1997) by Ji-li Jiang covers two and a half years in the author’s life, from the spring of 1966 when she was 12 years old to the fall of 1968 when she was 14 (although the Cultural Revolution continued until Mao Ze-dong’s death in 1976). The memoir is also Jiang’s coming-of-age story, as it focuses on a key time in her adolescent development. This study guide... Read Red Scarf Girl Summary

Publication year 1989Genre Short Story, FictionThemes Relationships: Mothers, Relationships: Daughters & Sons, Emotions/Behavior: Determination / Perseverance, Society: ImmigrationTags Chinese Literature, Relationships, History: Asian

“Rules of the Game” is a story in Amy Tan’s 1989 collection, The Joy Luck Club, which was adapted into a film by the same name. Tan was born in California to Chinese immigrant parents and grew up in the San Francisco Bay area. She wrote the short story in response to an article she read about Chinese Americans playing chess.The story is told by Waverly Place Jong, the daughter of Chinese immigrants living in... Read Rules of the Game Summary

Publication year 2017Genre Novel, FictionThemes Relationships: Family, Values/Ideas: Truth & LiesTags Chinese Literature, Asian Literature, Realistic Fiction, Children's Literature

See You in the Cosmos, a 2017 middle-grade contemporary novel by Jack Cheng, features 11-year-old Alex Petroski as its main character and narrator. Inspired by scientist Carl Sagan, Alex wants to use a hand-built rocket to send audio recordings about life on Earth to extraterrestrial creatures. Though his quest to communicate with alien life fails, Alex finds himself on a much larger journey toward self-identity and truth. The novel is a Golden Kite Award Winner... Read See You in the Cosmos Summary

Publication year 2018Genre Novel, FictionThemes Values/Ideas: Religion & Spirituality, Society: Immigration, Natural World: Place, Identity: Language, Relationships: Family, Values/Ideas: Safety & Danger, Relationships: Mothers, Life/Time: Mortality & Death, Emotions/Behavior: Memory, Life/Time: Childhood & Youth, Relationships: Daughters & Sons, Life/Time: The Past, Emotions/Behavior: Guilt, Emotions/Behavior: Shame & Pride, Emotions/Behavior: Grief, Relationships: Fathers, Emotions/Behavior: Nostalgia, Emotions/Behavior: Apathy, Emotions/Behavior: Loneliness, Self DiscoveryTags Satire, Science-Fiction / Dystopian Fiction, Survival Fiction, Chinese Literature, Immigration / Refugee

Publication year 1983Genre Autobiography / Memoir, NonfictionTags Asian Literature, Chinese Literature

Son of the Revolution (1983), written by Liang Heng with his wife, Judith Shapiro, is a memoir of the Chinese Cultural Revolution and is both the story of Liang’s own coming-of-age and a chronicle of China’s political and cultural upheaval following the Communist Party’s rise to power in the mid-1900s.Content Warning: The source material and this guide contain references to violence and death by suicide.Liang Heng is born in Changsha, a large city in central... Read Son of the Revolution Summary

Publication year 2002Genre Short Story Collection, FictionTags Chinese Literature, Asian Literature, Science-Fiction / Dystopian Fiction, Magical Realism, Technology, Science / Nature, Religion / Spirituality, Information Age

Stories of Your Life and Others is a collection of short stories published in 2002 by the American science fiction and fantasy writer Ted Chiang. The book contains eight stories that belong to science fiction, science fantasy, alternative history, and magic realism genres. Seven of the eight stories appeared in previous publications. In the stories, Chiang explores concepts including the ethics of science, the benefits and dangers of intelligence, and cultural differences in alternate realities... Read Stories of Your Life and Others Summary

Publication year -1Genre Book, NonfictionTags Asian Literature, Chinese Literature, Philosophy

The Tao Te Ching is a guide to the philosophy of Taoism and commonly credited to 6th-century BCE Chinese philosopher and writer Lao Tzu, though some portions of the text date back to the late 4th century. Taoism was a school of thought and method for survival in turbulent times, and its eighty-one short books explain what the Tao (roughly translated as “the way”) consists of.The Tao Te Ching begins with the idea that the... Read Tao Te Ching Summary

Publication year -1Genre Book, NonfictionThemes Society: War, Values/Ideas: Power & Greed, Relationships: TeamsTags Military / War, Business / Economics, Politics / Government, History: Asian, Chinese Literature

The Art of War, written in China during the fifth century BCE by military expert Sun Tzu, has been favored reading among soldiers and strategists for two millennia. Its concise 13 chapters, studied to this day by world leaders and generals from Chinese revolutionary Mao Zedong to US Joint Chiefs Chairman Colin Powell, teach victory through studying the opponent, building impregnable defenses, confusing the enemy with diversions, and attacking forcefully its weak spots. The book... Read The Art of War Summary

Publication year 2000Genre Short Story Collection, FictionThemes Emotions/Behavior: RevengeTags Chinese Literature, Asian Literature

The Bridegroom (2000) is a short story collection by Ha Jin. The stories touch on themes involving Chinese social life, the intersection of Chinese and American cultural and economic customs, and authority and the individual. The Bridegroom is Ha Jin’s third short story collection, and first following the success of his 1999 novel, Waiting. Each of the stories in The Bridegroom previously appeared in journals, such as Harper’s and The Boston Book Review. Plot SummaryThe... Read The Bridegroom Summary

Publication year 1978Genre Book, NonfictionThemes Society: Politics & Government, Values/Ideas: Religion & Spirituality, Identity: GenderTags Creative Nonfiction, History: Asian, Chinese Literature

The Death of Woman Wang by Jonathan Spence is a nonfiction history focusing on four crises in 17th-century rural China: problems with tax collection; a widow struggling to protect her child and inheritance from her husband’s relatives; a bloody feud; and the attempt of a woman named Wang to leave her husband.It is from the last topic that the book takes its title. Although Spence does not use the term himself, The Death of Woman... Read The Death of Woman Wang Summary

Publication year 1592Genre Novel, FictionThemes Emotions/Behavior: Shame & Pride, Values/Ideas: Order & Chaos, Values/Ideas: Good & EvilTags Mythology, Asian Literature, Classic Fiction, Chinese Literature

The Journey to the West: Volume I (1983), translated and edited by Anthony C. Yu, contains the first 25 chapters of a 100-chapter hero’s epic, an allegory designed to impart knowledge on how to behave and what values to extol. Originally published in the late 16th century during the late Ming Dynasty, this epic is “loosely based on the famous pilgrimage of Xuanzang…the monk who went from China to India in quest of Buddhist scriptures”... Read Journey to the West: Volume I Summary

Publication year 2017Genre Novel, FictionThemes Values/Ideas: MusicTags Chinese Literature, Asian Literature

The Leavers, author Lisa Ko's debut novel, won the 2016 PEN/Bellwether Prize for Socially Engaged Fiction. Inspired by a 2009 New York Times article about an undocumented Chinese woman held in predominantly solitary detention for 18 months, The Leavers tells the coming-of-age tale of Deming Guo/Daniel Wilkinson’s loss and eventual reconciliation with his birth mother, Polly Guo. In his journey to find his mother, Daniel learns of Polly’s challenges and comes to terms with his... Read The Leavers Summary

Publication year 2019Genre Novel, FictionThemes Identity: Sexuality, Values/Ideas: Religion & Spirituality, Society: ColonialismTags Asian Literature, Historical Fiction, Chinese Literature

The Night Tiger by Yangsze Choo was published in 2020. It’s a mixture of genres, including mythology and historical fiction, and it is a New York Times bestseller. The Night Tiger chronicles the period between May and July of 1931. The setting is colonial-era Malaysia, or “Malaya.” Plot SummaryChinese house servant Ren, is a 10-year-old orphan who’s mourning the death of his master, Dr. MacFarlane. Dr. MacFarlane was a weretiger who changed into a tiger... Read The Night Tiger Summary

Publication year 2016Genre Short Story Collection, FictionThemes Life/Time: The PastTags Fantasy, Chinese Literature, Asian Literature

The Paper Menagerie and Other Stories is a collection of 15 short stories from the award-winning science fiction author, Ken Liu. The collection includes tales of magical realism, futuristic technology, historical fiction, and gritty noir. Simon and Schuster published the book in 2016.Through these narratives, which often switch back from past to present or from story to book excerpts or legends, Liu invokes several diverse worlds with many Asian protagonists. In his stories, he references... Read The Paper Menagerie Summary

Publication year 2020Genre Novel, FictionThemes Emotions/Behavior: Fear, Emotions/Behavior: Hate & Anger, Emotions/Behavior: Love, Emotions/Behavior: Revenge, Values/Ideas: Good & Evil, Values/Ideas: Loyalty & Betrayal, Values/Ideas: Power & Greed, Relationships: FamilyTags Historical Fiction, Fantasy, Romance, Mystery / Crime Fiction, Chinese Literature

Publication year 2006Genre Novel, FictionThemes Values/Ideas: Science & Technology, Society: Politics & Government, Natural World: Appearance & Reality, Society: Community, Emotions/Behavior: Determination / Perseverance, Society: WarTags Science-Fiction / Dystopian Fiction, Fantasy, Chinese Literature, Anthropology, Climate Change, Politics / Government, Science / Nature, Technology, History: Asian

Publication year 2018Genre Novel, FictionThemes Values/Ideas: Good & Evil, Identity: Femininity, Natural World: EnvironmentTags Science-Fiction / Dystopian Fiction, LGBTQ, Gender / Feminism, Health / Medicine, Science / Nature, Chinese Literature

The Tiger Flu by Larissa Lai is a work of dystopian speculative fiction first published in 2018 by Arsenal Pulp Press, an independent publisher based in Vancouver, Canada. With its focus on futuristic technologies that merge and manipulate human biology, The Tiger Flu can be subclassified as a cyber/biopunk thriller. The book won the 2019 Lambda Literary Award, which recognizes and celebrates the best LGBTQ books of the year. A Chinese Canadian, lesbian writer, Larissa... Read The Tiger Flu Summary

Publication year 2013Genre Novel, FictionTags Historical Fiction, Asian Literature, Chinese Literature

The Valley of Amazement, a work of historical fiction first published in 2013, is the sixth novel by author Amy Tan. This guide refers to the Kindle Edition for citations. Tan primarily writes about the complexity of the mother-daughter bond and about the experience of being Chinese American. In The Valley of Amazement, a mother and daughter recount their lives in early-20th-century Shanghai and San Francisco.Tan’s debut novel, The Joy Luck Club (1989), became a... Read The Valley of Amazement Summary

Publication year 1976Genre Autobiography / Memoir, NonfictionThemes Identity: Gender, Relationships: FamilyTags Asian Literature, Chinese Literature

The Woman Warrior (1976) is an experimental memoir by Chinese-American author Maxine Hong Kingston. The book weaves together stories of Kingston’s childhood in California and her mother’s youth in rural China with folklore, legend, and myth, defying easy genre classification.The book is divided into five parts. In the first, “No-Name Woman,” Kingston imagines different life stories for an aunt she never met—a woman who drowned herself and her baby after being expelled from her village... Read The Woman Warrior Summary

Publication year 1981Genre Novel, FictionThemes Emotions/Behavior: courage, Emotions/Behavior: Determination / Perseverance, Emotions/Behavior: Hope, Identity: Gender, Identity: Race, Relationships: Fathers, Society: Immigration, Society: Nation, Values/Ideas: EqualityTags Historical Fiction, Auto/Biographical Fiction, Asian Literature, Chinese Literature

Thousand Pieces of Gold is a biographical novel written by Ruthanne Lum McCunn. McCunn is known for writing about the lives of often-forgotten Chinese Americans, and Thousand Pieces of Gold follows the life of Polly Bemis, a Chinese American woman considered to be one of the most important female pioneers in Idaho in the 19th century. The novel explores themes such as The Burden and Pain of Family Betrayal, Gender Expectations and the Quest for... Read Thousand Pieces of Gold Summary

Publication year 1999Genre Novel, FictionTags Historical Fiction, Chinese Literature, Asian Literature

Ties That Bind, Ties That Break (1999) is a young adult historical novel by Lensey Namioka that won the 2000 Washington State Book Award and the 2004 California Young Readers Medal for Young Adults. It focuses on a young Chinese girl growing up during a revolutionary period in the 1920s who refuses to have her feet bound as tradition dictates. A sequel, An Ocean Apart, A World Away (2002) focuses on the main character’s best... Read Ties That Bind, Ties That Break Summary

Publication year 1992Genre Novel, FictionTags Chinese Literature, Asian Literature, History: Asian, Historical Fiction, Military / War

To Live (1992) by novelist Yu Hua traces the struggles of Fugui and his family. Told as a story within a story, an unknown narrator encounters Fugui, who proceeds to tell the story of his life. Instead of traditional chapters, the novel is broken into sections based off whether or not it’s the narrator talking or Fugui. The narrator’s sections are italicized and much shorter than Fugui’s longer, non-italicized sections. Spanning over four decades of... Read To Live Summary

Publication year 1989Genre Short Story, FictionThemes Emotions/Behavior: Grief, Emotions/Behavior: MemoryTags Chinese Literature, Asian Literature

“Two Kinds” by Amy Tan is a short story from the collection The Joy Luck Club, which was originally published in 1989. The full short story collection was adapted for film as the eponymous Joy Luck Club in 1993. Amy Tan and Ronald Bass adapted the screenplay. The series portrays first and second-generation Chinese immigrants living out the “American dream” in current day Chinatown, San Francisco. Through a series of 16 linked stories, four women... Read Two Kinds Summary

Publication year 1991Genre Novel, FictionTags Chinese Literature, Asian Literature

Typical American is a 1991 novel by Gish Jen that depicts the lives of three Chinese immigrants who move to America to escape political turmoil. The novel portrays their struggles with racism, American culture, and consumerism. Jen’s debut novel, Typical American was selected as a finalist for the 1991 National Book Critics Circle Award. Jen, herself a first-generation Chinese American, has since written several other novels, in addition to nonfiction books, short stories, and articles.Content... Read Typical American Summary

Publication year 2017Genre Novel, FictionThemes Values/Ideas: Safety & Danger, Emotions/Behavior: GriefTags Chinese Literature, Asian Literature, Technology, Science-Fiction / Dystopian Fiction

Marie Lu’s young adult science fiction Warcross (2017) is the first book in the Warcross series. Set in the future, bounty hunter Emika Chen takes part in an international online game to track down her mark. Lu writes primarily dystopian and science fiction for young adults and is well known for her bestselling trilogy, Legend. Kirkus Reviews included Warcross on its Best Teen Science Fiction books of 2017. This guide references the 2017 Random House... Read Warcross Summary