I enjoy books that tell the true stories of extraordinary individuals. The men whose stories are related in "Fortunate Sons" are fascinating because their lives are intertwined with the modernization of China in the late nineteenth and early twentieth century. While the authors do discuss many events in Chinese history such as the Boxer Rebellion and the 1911 Revolution, these events are described in a way that is easy to understand for someone not familiar with them. This makes for a work that is informative but also very readable.
I received my copy of this book as a free First Reads advance copy. I am glad I had a chance to read it because I not only learned a lot about Chinese history, filling in gaps in my knowledge of many of these events, but also I was able to learn about a group of men who shared a unique educational experience which gave them skills they could use to the benefit of their homeland.