Bittersweet: A Novel

Signed hardcover copies available from author; list price: $19.95
now $12.95 *

“First novelist Li transforms the eventful life of her Chinese grandmother Li Xiuwen–who was born in 1889 and became the wife of Li Zongren, a major political figure in modern China–into an appealing story. Interpolating fresh historical research, Li describes the century of vital change that her protagonist, called Bittersweet, witnessed: an era that stretched from the end of the empire to the tragedy of the Tiananmen Square massacre.”

— Publishers Weekly

“A panoramic whirl through Chinese history in a first novel inspired by a Chinese grandmother who was granted that most ambiguous of wishes — to live in interesting times.”

— Kirkus Reviews

“Taken as history alone, this is a fascinating book…  But it is also an absorbing novel, full of private frustrations and excursions to the market; philosophical mornings in the garden and difficult relatives; intimate cups of tea and the satisfying, gradual evolution of a character.”

— The New Yorker

Daughter of Heaven: A Memoir with Earthly Recipes

Signed paperback copies available from author; list price: $13.95
now $10.95 *

“This delectable book will satisfy multiple appetites: for compelling family saga, for heartfelt coming-of-age story, and for irresistible Chinese dishes.”

— Sigrid Nunez, author of The Last of Her Kind

“Warmly received, sharply observed…  If food, with its attendant emotions and symbolism, is at the heart of the book, it is just one layer in a very rich composite.”

— Associated Press

“Li has an almost filmic talent for bringing odd events into sharp focus… and the recipes are delectable.”

— Corinne Trang, author of Essentials of Asian Cuisine

“Like an amuse-bouche, each vignette in Li’s memoir tantalizes with a taste of Li’s life as a Chinese-American in suburban New York… the book is more than satisfying, and the mythical ending (Li recounts a fable of her own) is haunting.”

— Starred review in Publishers Weekly

“…goes far beyond the show-and-tell character of standard memoirs… the story of the author’s personal journey from the young multi-ethnic girl growing up in New York who would have happily shed any connection to her Chinese roots, to the mature woman who seeks to connect to her ancestry on a much deeper level.”

— San Francisco Chronicle

Enter the Dragon

Signed  copies available from author or Main Street Arts: mas@sover.net
now $20.00 *

Produce a children’s play in a week — from casting call to final curtain!

Enter the Dragon contains:

  • Three royalty-free and permission-to-copy plays, each adapted from a Chinese folk tale.  Running time: 40 to 50 minutes each.  Cast: 12 – 25 children ages 7 – 12.
  • 17 songs with original music and lyrics; the option to create your own music in the composer-friendly pentatonic scale.
  • Synopses.  An outline of the folk tale precedes each play. The Magic Whip: When the Emperor threatens to destroy the sea with a magic whip, a young girl uses her intelligence — and the help of the Dragon King — to save the environment.  The Jade Stone: The Emperor orders a stone carver to carve a dragon from a perfect piece of jade. But when the carver asks the stone what it wants to be, the answer he receives is very different. The Magic Paintbrush: A young boy is granted his fondest wish: a magic paintbrush that transforms images into reality.  When the boy is forced to paint whatever the Emperor demands, the results are surprising, indeed!
  • Daily schedule.  A day-by-day journal of how to conduct a 15- to 20-hour theater workshop (3 to 4 hours a day over 5 days).
  • Tips on how to make simple stage sets, props and costumes.
  • Color photos of scenes from the three plays as performed at Main Street Arts, a community arts center in Vermont.
  • A step-by-step mini-course in Chinese calligraphy.