Maugham spent the winter months of 1919 travelling 1500 miles up the Yangtze river. He noted down crafted sketches of those he met on scraps of paper. This collection features Western missionaries, army officers and company managers who are culturally out of their depth in the immensity of the Chinese civilisation.
About the Author
William Somerset Maugham was born in 1874 and lived in Paris until he was ten. He was educated at King’s School, Canterbury, and at Heidelberg University. He spent some time at St. Thomas’ Hospital with the idea of practising medicine, but the success of his first novel, Liza of Lambeth, published in 1897, won him over to literature. Of Human Bondage, the first of his masterpieces, came out in 1915, and with the publication in 1919 of The Moon and Sixpence his reputation as a novelist was established. At the same time his fame as a successful playwright and writer was being consolidated with acclaimed productions of various plays and the publication of several short story collections. His other works include travel books, essays, criticism and the autobiographical The Summing Up and A Writer’s Notebook. In 1927 Somerset Maugham settled in the South of France and lived there until his death in 1965
"Evoke the nostalgic China of "old China hands," replete with rickshaws, coolies and singsing girls...satisfying accounts of the follies and foibles of the British diplomats and expatriates who stubbornly ignore the native culture and labor to create little enclaves of Chelsea and Soho in Asia" * Los Angeles Times * "Masterly...carefully wrought prose sketches...The magical, mysterious East is richly portrayed" * Newsday * "A fascinating volume - vivid, thoughtful, full of colour" * New York Times *