I read Lost on Planet China, by J. Maarten Troost, earlier this year, and definitely enjoyed this honest, quirky, far-reaching look at a country that is, by turns, wonderful and horrible. From massive pollution to incomprehensible working conditions and the sheer density of people to majestic landscapes and enclaves practically overlooked by the modern world. China has a bit of everything, and while Troost is a seasoned traveler he still runs into plenty of challenges.
I would pair this nonfiction book with The Good Earth by Pearl S. Buck. This classic historical fiction novel examines the life of a Chinese family in a small village before World War I. It's such a great account of the family's good times and the hard times...their poverty and rise to riches. I think it could be an insightful peek at China's past and add some context to Lost on Planet China even though it's only a very small portion of China's vast and rich history.
Have you read either of these books?
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