National Review Online, July 1, 2011
NRO’s John Derbyshire wrote the following:
“For a Chinese memoir, read Chinese Girl in the Ghetto, by Ying Ma. Ying Ma was born in South China in the late 1970s, shortly after the death of Mao Tse-tung and the end of the Cultural Revolution. Her brief memoir is in two parts. The first deals with her Chinese childhood up to age eight or nine. Then she immigrates to America with her parents and settles in the Oakland ghetto. The second half of her book tells of her experiences as an Asian immigrant living among America’s urban poor. Though unremarkable in themselves, those experiences are told with a simplicity and frankness that make them stick in the mind. Ying Ma is particularly unsparing on the casual racism of ghetto blacks: a taboo topic in polite society, but common currency in the conversation of Chinese immigrants. The book’s strongest impression, though, is of the stoical toughness of the author and her family, a toughness constrained and civilized by the ancient humanist tradition of their homeland. Tigers indeed; but with the hearts and sensibilities of philosophers.”
Chinese Girl in the Ghetto is available on Amazon.com in paperback and for kindle.