China: A Traveler's Literary Companion
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"China: A Traveler's Literary Companion," edited by Kirk A. Denton (Whereabouts Press, $14.95), provides a way to see the country through fiction "that offers a strong sense of place," Denton says in his introduction. The stories, written from 1921 to 2003, range in setting from the mountains and streams of West Hunan, to silkworm-raising country and sorghum fields, to the high plateaus where Tibetan culture mingles with that of the Han Chinese. Other stories are set in the booming metropolises of Beijing, Shanghai and Hong Kong. Themes include the place of tradition in a modern society, changing values, poverty, the effects of globalization and identity.