Iron & Silk

By Mark Salzman,

Book cover of Iron & Silk

Book description

This large print edition recounts the true adventures of a young martial arts student in China. Told as a series of lightly sketched episodes, the book allows the reader a glimpse of Chinese culture largely unaccessible to foreigners.

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Why read it?

2 authors picked Iron & Silk as one of their favorite books. Why do they recommend it?

Another inspiration for me was Mark’s first book, about his experience in the 1980s teaching English and studying martial arts in China. One of the first books to explore life in China after the reforms that followed the excesses of the Cultural Revolution, this book has become a classic.

A few years after this book was published, he even starred in a film adaptation! I’m a little old to do that now.

From Brett's list on books about living abroad in Asia.

This classic about a young American teacher’s adventures in post Cultural Revolution China set the standard for “travel memoir”. Salzman’s journey is captivating and unique because it is, at its core, a love story with the country, the culture, the people, and martial arts—the sort of adoration that could only manifest in youth. He gives himself entirely to the experience and, thus, takes the reader along with him. A wonderful book that lingers in the memory for decades.

From Andrew's list on for travelers to Asia.

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