The Great Walk of China: Travels on Foot from Shanghai to Tibet • Graham Earnshaw

By |November 12th, 2019|

When it comes to travel writing, China’s immense size can be overwhelming. Solutions include focusing on a small town and its hinterland, or – at the other extreme – covering every province. A good compromise is taking a transect across the country, whether that thread be a river, a highway, […]

The Front Lines of the War, and other poems • Scott Ezell

By |October 30th, 2019|

I don’t review poetry. Well, until now. I’m breaking that commandment in posting this review of Scott Ezell’s outstanding poetry chapbook, The Front Lines of the War. The problem with reviewing poetry is I lack the knowledge and ability to appreciate and describe it, and I’m not a big fan of […]

Night in the American Village: Women in the Shadow of the U.S. Military Bases in Okinawa • Akemi Johnson

By |October 23rd, 2019|

I’ve read nearly a hundred English-language works on the Ryukyus and Okinawa, and Night in the American Village is an easy pick for my top five books. It’s cleverly structured, well researched, informative yet highly readable, and, unusual for a book examining the issue of the American military presence on Okinawa, it […]

Okinawa Moon • Arthur Oroz

By |October 21st, 2019|

This likeable novel opens on the island of Guam in the Marianas, where twenty-year-old Airman 2nd Class John Montez is stationed with the 19th Bomb Group, Far East Air Force.  He’s angry with himself for not joining the Marines like many of his friends and relatives have. A tough fighting unit with […]

Empire of Infields: Baseball in Taiwan and Cultural Identity, 1895-1968 • John J. Harney

By |October 20th, 2019|

With two excellent books on the history of baseball in Taiwan, is there need for another work on the subject? Not really, but Empire of Infields: Baseball in Taiwan and Cultural Identity, 1895-1968 is a welcome addition. Like its predecessors, it’s an academic publication where questions of national identity take precedence […]

Betwixt and Between: A Memoir of New China • Margaret Sun 

By |October 18th, 2019|

During a Publisher Interview last year with Graham Earnshaw, the man behind Earnshaw Books, I asked which era he thought was most underrepresented in English-language books on China. The 1950s he said without a moment’s hesitation, and I have to agree. Since that conversation, he’s been doing his bit to […]

Author Interview: Tom Carter

By |September 24th, 2019|

Talented American writer and photographer Tom Carter is one of the great characters of the expat tribe in China. I’ve always admired the way he throws himself into projects with the kind of tireless passion that makes the Energiser Bunny look lazy. When Carter did a photographic book on the […]

Author Interview: Alvin Lu

By |July 29th, 2019|

Alvin Lu, a second-generation Taiwanese American who was born and currently lives in San Francisco, is the author of The Hell Screens, a stylish thriller set in Taipei. The protagonist is Chinese-American Cheng-Ming, who is obsessed with a serial rapist-murderer known as the Taxi Driver Killer (aka K), who is terrorizing the […]

The Nagasaki Peace Discourse: City Hall and the Quest for a Nuclear Free World • Geoffrey C. Gunn

By |June 26th, 2019|

You feel a certain amount of pressure to be emotionally moved when visiting Nagasaki’s most important atomic bomb sites such as the Peace Park, the Nagasaki Atomic Bomb Museum, and the Atomic Bomb Hypocentre Park (the spot above which the “Fat Man” bomb detonated at 11:02 on August 9, 1945). If […]

Remembering Shanghai: A Memoir of Socialites, Scholars and Scoundrels • Claire Chao and Isabel Sun Chao

By |June 24th, 2019|

The Pearl of the Orient, the Paris of the East – Shanghai of the 1920s to 1949 has long captivated readers as one of history’s great cities; it’s been a first-choice setting for China fiction and non-fiction. Is there room on the shelf for yet another title? Yes, if the […]