Tuesday, January 20, 2015

A Snapshot of Chinese Culture

Title:  China A to Z
Author: May-Lee Chai, Winberg Chai
Publisher: Plume

China A to Z is a great little cultural encyclopedia for those of us who may be a bit intimidated by travel to China. Addressing everything from popular scandals to how the Chinese view interracial relationships (especially interesting to me as my daughter is half Chinese), this is a very worthy snapshot of modern day Chinese Culture.

Separated into categories, it's easy to skip to the categories that most interest you, but each entry is worth reading. Not only do you learn about things like the types of food you may be served, but why they may serve it to you, and how to avoid eating certain things while still remaining sensitive to the needs of your Chinese hosts.
Although the book is honest about some of the negatives about Chinese culture (i.e. the treatment of some of their ethnic minorities), the overall impression is of a country of warm, friendly people who have a real curiosity about non-Chinese.

The book made me want to travel to China and when I eventually do get there, I'll definitely use this as a reference!

*ARC Provided by Netgalley for review purposes.

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