NEW ASIA BOOK--HIGHLY RECOMMENDED

Apr 19th, 2010, 04:28 AM
  #41  
 
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I think eks is referring to a windup clock she has placed on the upper right hand side of the computer monitor
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Apr 19th, 2010, 05:06 AM
  #42  
 
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Lol, Hanuman! That must be the one that's broken - that's why she didn't hear it ticking.
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Apr 19th, 2010, 06:49 AM
  #43  
 
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I remind everyone thatr the OP's spatial orientation may not be entirely accurate. Her report of a clock in the upper right (ignoring the smarty pants comment except to note that I would rather have smart pants than stupid pants) has about a 25% chance of being correct.

If one has schrunched up one's face, there is a good chamnce that the lines of vision have been effected.
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Apr 19th, 2010, 09:56 AM
  #44  
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Very funny! I am not very tech savvy. But I do know that there is a clock on the upper right.

Ho Ho Ho...turning blue. Ordering coffins. Windup clocks.

Well, the joke is on all of you! I started my report!
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Apr 19th, 2010, 12:54 PM
  #45  
 
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eks, I'm also a Mac person, and of course, the clock is on the upper right.
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Apr 19th, 2010, 06:25 PM
  #46  
 
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I just read Nothing to Envy as well - a book(f) of mindblowing oral histories, an absolute must read for anyone interested in the "other" Asia.
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Jun 13th, 2010, 01:03 PM
  #47  
 
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Link to a review of "Burmese Lessons" - http://tinyurl.com/287y5sh
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Dec 30th, 2010, 01:32 PM
  #48  
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Marya: I finally got around to the Nien Chang book and I want to recommend this fascinating and frightening memoir to anyone with an interest in China or recent Chinese history; I cannot put it down:

http://www.amazon.com/Life-Death-Sha.../dp/014010870X



http://www.theatlantic.com/technolog...n-cheng/29708/
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Dec 30th, 2010, 01:34 PM
  #49  
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Sorry, the author is Nien ChEng. I know that Marya linked the book up above but it is so good I think it is worth another mention:


http://www.nytimes.com/2009/11/07/books/07cheng.html
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Dec 30th, 2010, 11:15 PM
  #50  
 
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Oh -- I am so glad that you picked it up. Wasn't she extraordinary?

I am still carrying around the copy of "Nothing to Envy" that I bought when you recommended it way back when. I hope to finally read it on this trip (I am back in Beijing after spending 19 hours just getting from Boston to Newark the other day.) I also have Hannah Pakula's "The Last Empress," a book about Mme Chiang Kai-Shek.
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Dec 31st, 2010, 03:02 AM
  #51  
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Extraordinary! You know, I had bought it before I went to Burma with Pandaw. I bought so many books that I cut a few at the last minute (this was a mistake, since I was then forced to pillage the library on the ship which, thankfully, had some good stuff but not enough). What an incredible woman to have withstood all that for so many years. I am not at the part when she has just been released....

I find myself waking up at night and turning on the light to read another chapter. I had no idea of the terrors of this period in China. It all seems surreal, that mindless following of what now seem ridiculous precepts..

Do read "Nothing to Envy" and let me know what you think--that one is also gripping and has more than a few parallels with the Cheng book.

And most of all, have fun in China (I am most curious to know if the Nien Cheng book is on sale in China today)and have a happy and healthy New Year!
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Jan 3rd, 2011, 08:25 AM
  #52  
 
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Happy 2011! You just read Nien Cheng's book? Our families were good friends and I went to the same school as Meiping (not the same class). Email me if you'd like to know more about Auntie Cheng.
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Jan 3rd, 2011, 08:51 AM
  #53  
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S. Not only did I read the book but I was absolutely swept away by it. The fact that your family knew her is just incredible. I finished it about a week ago and cannot get the story out of my head...she was such a courageous and brilliant woman and one who did not let bitterness wreck the many years that remained after her liberation. It would seem that she did resurrect her life after emigrating to the US and that she had many friends here, but it did strike me as sad that she had very little relationship with her siblings...

I wondered if the book was available in China (??) and what the official take on the period is now...



Do you have any plans to come east anytime soon??
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Jan 3rd, 2011, 05:20 PM
  #54  
 
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Eks,

They did not have Nien Cheng's book at the 'Foreign Languages Bookstore' on Wangfujing when I was there yesterday. I hope to get over to the Bookworm (Beijing branch) later this week and will check to see if they have it in stock there.

While you grapple with Nien Cheng's remarkable story, I am trying to recover my balance after charging through NOTHING TO ENVY. Now I see why you gave it your "highest recommendation." I am overwhelmed and need to settle down before I can say anything even half-way useful about this riveting book.

Any of you Fodorites looking for an exceptionally stimulating read to start 2011 would do well to pick up the title with which eks launched this thread -- NOTHING TO ENVY: ORDINARY LIVES IN NORTH KOREA by journalist Barbara Demick. Wow.

The only glimpse that I have ever gotten into North Korea before this was offered by the wonderful documentary, A STATE OF MIND, that follows two teen-aged gymnasts as they prepare for competition and the privilege of performing before Kim Jong-il. Also highly recommended.

Anything else to recommend?
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Jan 5th, 2011, 08:28 AM
  #55  
 
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EK: Nien Cheng wrote her book in english (I have an autographed copy), it was translated into dozens of languages but I haven't seen one in chinese. Officially, the Cultural Revolution is seldom mentioned, it's called the period of unrest, older people speak in hushed tones of their terrifying experiences.

DD is now working in LA so I don't have plans to come east soon. When are you visiting California? We had a lovely evening with wiselindag and her DH last year at a shanghai restaurant in SF chinatown.
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Jan 5th, 2011, 08:34 AM
  #56  
 
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Nien CHeng's book has haunted since I read it years ago. I'm returning to Shanghai this year and because of this thread think I'll re-read it and add "Nothing to Envy" to my iPad reader..Thanks for the recommendation Eks.
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Jan 6th, 2011, 02:50 AM
  #57  
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Happy: So glad you are set to return to Shanghai! Where else do you plan to visit on that trip?


This will surely not be on the level of the Nien Cheng or the Demick book, but I will take it on the plane with me to Spain. I really need to get an iPad!


http://www.amazon.co.uk/Lost-Found-R.../dp/1848850239





I read another one about Russia (Siberia) last month and will recommend:


http://www.amazon.com/Travels-Siberi.../dp/0374278725
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Jul 2nd, 2011, 01:31 PM
  #58  
 
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Any suggestions relevant to South Korea? Looking for things to put on my Kindle. (I'll be getting "Nothing to Envy," I'm sure.)
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Jul 2nd, 2011, 11:26 PM
  #59  
 
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Still Life with Rice by Helie Lee

The Calligrapher's Daughter by Eugenia Kim

Both are excellent!
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Jul 3rd, 2011, 03:59 AM
  #60  
 
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Thank you for the quick and helpful response, Gailmo! I've just downloaded The Calligrapher's Daughter.

Just to add to this handy threaad: a book I enjoyed before going to Japan a few years ago was Learning To Bow, by Bruce Feiler (memoir of an ESL teacher in a Japanese town).
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