Danielle McClellan's Reviews > China to Me

China to Me by Emily Hahn
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Jan 29, 12

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Emily Hahn is one of my all time favorite writers/women/adventurers and if I were an actress she is the one character that I would want to play in a film. In her autobiographical writing, Hahn is brutally honest about her complicated life and nobody could ever accuse her of taking the easy road. She talks about her decision to leave her comfortable home to move to the Southwest to become an engineer, and later, move to Asia, where she hooked up with a Chinese lover, a pet monkey, and a minor opium addiction. Still later in Hong Kong she fell head-over-heels into an affair with Charles Boxer, a married man (and British spy). When he was imprisoned by the invading Japanese, she managed to evade authorities by disguising herself as a local woman. (Please note, I last read this book a number of years ago and also her biography so some of this may have shown up in the bio instead of the memoir.) I once had a professor at Yale tell me about having dinner with Hahn and Boxer many years later and he remembered that at the end of the meal Hahn dumped a vase of water over Boxer's head when he flirted with a young woman at their table. Glad to hear that she did not lose her wonderful strong personality as she aged. She was smart and funny and wild and her writing is a treat.
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