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Authors: Vivian Yang

Shanghai Girl

BOOK: Shanghai Girl
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Praise for Vivian Yang’s
Shanghai Girl



Shanghai Girl
superb literature ... one of the best of contemporary novels written by Chinese authors …
(Yang is a) Shanghai success ...
We eagerly await Yang's next literary feat
.” --
EVE Magazine


Shanghai Girl
– a feat in itself …
Yang puts a new, often lighthearted spin on frequently covered topics like Chinese identity, the U.S. immigrant experience and reverberations of the Cultural Revolution.


HK Magazine


A novel that is hard to put down once you’ve picked it up ...  Yang masterfully transports the living onto the page in a way that is sure to make any writer jealous and any reader sit up and take notice.” --


Yang brings with her an expanded array of journeys and experiences, reflective of not only a changing America, but also of a world in transition.”

The Museum of Chinese in America


Compelling story … Fiercely feminine voice … Great description … Inherently fascinating locale … Very likable narrator ... Strong language … A pleasure to read.”


The New Jersey State Council on the Arts


Another ‘Tale of Two Cities’ …
Paris and London played roles in Dickens’ famous novel 
A Tale of Two Cities. In Shanghai Girl
, it is Shanghai and New York.”
The Sampan (Boston)


A new voice from Shanghai.”

The Hong Kong Standard




Memoirs of a Eurasian

S. G. Shan Hai Gaaru

Status, Society, and Sino-Singaporeans






















Leonard Lopate Essay Contest-winnning excerpt of Vivian Yang’s new novel
Memoirs of a Eurasian

appears after
Shanghai Girl




Vivian Yang
Vivian Yang
is the author of the novels
Memoirs of a Eurasian
Shanghai Girl
(2011 and 2001),
S.G. Shan Hai Gaaru
(2011 and 2002), and the nonfiction
Status, Society, and Sino-Singaporeans


Born and raised in Shanghai’s former European quarters -- often the setting of her fiction, Vivian holds an M.A. in intercultural communication from Arizona State University and
taught English and journalism at Shanghai International Studies University. She was a Literature Fellow in Prose of the New Jersey State Council on the Arts, a Publishing Project grantee from the Hong Kong Arts Development Council, a Tuition Scholar at the Bread Loaf Writers’ Conference, a Woolrich Writing Fund Scholar and a Writing Program Scholar at Columbia University, and a top
winner of The
Lopate Essay Contest
, the entry of which is a chapter of
Memoirs of a Eurasian


Vivian has
written for 
Business Weekly, China Daily
Far Eastern Economic Review

South China Morning Post,
The Wall Street Journal Asia
and has published fiction in literary journals in the United States and in Asia. Her work has also appeared in the Opinion page of
HK Magazine, The National Law Journal
, and
The New York Times


, start a discussion on Amazon’s Vivian Yang Page (
), join the
Shanghai Girl
Page on Facebook, and follow Vivian on Twitter
@ ShanghaiGirlUsa






Shanghai Girl




A Novel






Vivian Yang









Copyright © 2001-2011 by Vivian W. Yang

All rights reserved



ISBN-ISBN-13: 978-1461123569 

ISBN-10: 1461123569



Also available as a Kindle e-book



Designed by Katherine Wong





I Out Of The Misty Eastern Cave


1 SHA-FEI HONG: Exile from Avenue Joffre 1

2 GORDON LOU: Gentleman Avenger 15

3 SHA-FEI HONG: Great Red Fortune 29

4 EDWARD COOK: Connections and Recollections 48

5 SHA-FEI HONG: Bound to Meet On a Narrow Alley 55

6 GORDON LOU: Ninja Strategist 67

7 SHA-FEI HONG: The Revolutionary Help Exchange 70

8 EDWARD COOK: The Long March White Powder 80


II Over The Western Wave


9 SHA-FEI HONG: Sweet and Sour Big Apple 86

10 SHA-FEI HONG: Maiden Voyage Running Aground 97

11 EDWARD COOK: The Interlocution of an Interculturalist 108

12 SHA-FEI HONG: A Chinatown Prescription 111

13 SHA-FEI HONG: No More Sewing Others’ Trousseau 120

14 SHA-FEI HONG: Big Curvaceous Field 127

15 EDWARD COOK: Dig and You Shall Find 134

16 GORDON LOU: The Lofty Move 142

17 SHA-FEI HONG: Holy Matrimony 149

18 EDWARD COOK: Season’s Greetings 156

19 GORDON LOU: He Laughs Best 161

20 SHA-FEI HONG: Two Is a Pair 167



The Shanghai in the Girl 180



Appendix: A conversation with
Vivian Yang
, author of

Memoirs of a Eurasian
Shanghai Girl


An Excerpt of
Memoirs of a Eurasian
by Vivian Yang






Swiftly walk over the western wave,
Spirit of Night!
Out of the misty eastern cave
Where, all the long and lone daylight,
Thou wovest dreams of joy and fear,
Which make thee terrible and dear, --
Swift be thy flight!







1 Sha-Fei Hong: Exile from Avenue Joffre


Upon first hearing, my name sounds commonplace enough for a Chinese girl: pretty and prosaic. Few have asked me why I am called Sha-Fei. People assume that I must have been born at dawn when the morning light,
, was glowing, and
, the rosy clouds, were floating. But I know I was named after the trendiest street in Shanghai’s former French Concession, Avenue Joffre. The Chinese translation for the onetime marshal of France was Sha-Fei.


My life as a Shanghai girl began in the same gardened Western-style house in the heart of the Concession where my father had grown up in the 1930’s. Father named me. In 1964, Shanghai had already been liberated by the Party for fifteen years. Any sentimental display towards her colonial past would have been severely punished. Father used a pun in naming me and kept his genuine intent deep in his heart.

My earliest recollection of was the ambiance surrounding our neighborhood, the part of town known to the locals as “The Upper Section.” Images of our house remain in my head like snapshots -- the red tiles on tapered roof, the gray steel window frames shipped in from Lyons when the house was built, 14-foot ceilings, French windows opening to the verandah, the fenced in garden with Chinese parasol trees and a rosebush. There was the sound of crying cicadas on humid summer nights, when the ceiling fans ran all night long and the smell of the mosquito-repellent incense permeated the house. For reasons unclear to me, I was not allowed to enter two places in the house: the Ancestor Worshipping Hall and the servant’s quarters. My favorite indoor play area was the pantry adjacent to the kitchen where a giant GE refrigerator stood, its motor buzzing. The pantry had a small door opening from below the kitchen counter through which freshly prepared food was brought to the dining room. Just above the house’s top floor solarium, between the stucco overhangs, were the words
1928 A.D.
, in relief.

BOOK: Shanghai Girl
2.17Mb size Format: txt, pdf, ePub

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