Categories
Chinese language Food Los Angeles Shanghai

Jiaozi

I love jiaozi. It’s what I want to eat when I go home to Los Angeles. It’s the first stop if I’m traveling¬† in Asia, whether that’s Kyoto (where they’re called gyoza), Taipei or Shanghai. For me, jiaozi is comfort food. But at least one website breathlessly declares jiaozi to be: at the heart and […]

Categories
Politics Sexual harassment

Say It Ain’t So, Joe

The 1919 World Series pitted the Cincinnati Reds against the Chicago White Sox. The Sox were heavily favored to win but lost 5:10. Rumors soon circulated that players like “Shoeless” Joe Jackson threw the games. The ensuing Black Sox Scandal resulted in a grand jury indictment of Shoeless Joe, 7 other White Sox players and […]

Categories
Craft Shanghai The Shanghai Quartet

Mind Map

This is the map into my interlocking novels, The Shanghai Quartet. It’s a bulletin board my husband made for me, 6 feet wide and 4 feet tall. The backdrop is a map of modern Shanghai, enlarged many times over, onto which I’ve pasted the street names in use when this was Old Shanghai. Onto that […]

Categories
Book tour Historical fiction

Day of the Dead

Every culture has a tradition of honoring the dead. It may be grave sweeping in China or the Obon festival in Japan. On All Souls’s Day here in Amsterdam, families set candle-lit boots loose onto the lake in Vondelpark to send messages to departed loved ones. History is another way to remember the dead. It’s […]

Categories
Craft poetry Revolution The Shanghai Quartet

Laogai

Laogai will be the third volume of The Shanghai Quartet and its star will be Song Kang. We first see Kang in The Dancing Girl and the Turtle as the returned student, the prodigal son, called back from America to care for his ailing sister Anyi. Eighteen years later, we meet him again. He’s in […]