A Geek in China


This book is a project I have been working on the past few years. I was approached by the publisher to write this book and it is part of a series that is selling quite well, which includes A Geek in Japan, A Geek in Thailand, and A Geek in Korea. It was an interesting project. My focus was on cultural literacy. In other words, what are the kinds of things that all kids in China grow up with and know about, such as, who was Confucius, what was so great about the Han Dynasty, China’s regional cuisines, who are the biggest pop stars in China today, and so on. The audience for this book is armchair travelers curious about China, and those who know some Chinese and want to better understand all the cultural references that come up in everyday speech and writing. When you speak the language, it is also important that you understand something about the culture—history, politics, important people, myths and legends, literature, music, and so on. It is quite accessible with lots of photographs and short essays on a wide range of topics. Below is the promotional blurb from Amazon. It is scheduled to be released on December 27, 2016, and December 15, 2016 in the UK.

You can get it here (or in the link on the right under Books):


For every fan of kung fu, steamed dumplings, Confucius and giant skyscrapers, A Geek in China is a hip, smart and concise guide to the Middle Kingdom.

Packed with photographs and short articles on all aspects of Chinese culture, past and present, A Geek in China introduces readers to everything from Taoism and Confucianism to pop music and China’s new middle class. A mix of traditional culture, such as highlights of Chinese history, great historical and mythological figures, traditional medicine, how the Chinese language works, real Chinese food, martial arts, and how the Chinese Communist Party works, is complimented with information on what makes China unique today.

Chapters discuss why China is so crowded, what it’s like to work in an office, internet and cell phone culture, dating and marriage practices, top popular movies and movie stars, the contemporary art scene, China’s amazing new architecture and infrastructure, and popular holidays. It also contains chapters on what makes the Chinese tick, such as the importance of harmony in society, the practice of humility, and the importance of hierarchy. For visitors to the country, the author includes sections on what to see, both common cultural sites and off-the-beaten-track sites, and how to get around in China. Sections on visiting Hong Kong and Taiwan are also included.

This China travel guide is a unique guide to the world’s most populous and longest continuous culture. Readers will learn essential information about China’s past and present to be able to understand the many references to history, politics, and pop culture that come up in everyday conversation and in the media.

5 thoughts on “A Geek in China

  1. This book really seems like it has something for everything. I am a junior in College studying Economics and Mandarin, and it seems like this book would be great for learning manners and business manners in China. It also seems to have great facts and loaded with pictures.

  2. I definitely want to pick up a copy, as your style of writing and content on this site conveys a very unique, useful perspective on thanks that really matter to individuals like myself (I’m a huge geek). I’m almost scared to order a copy, because it sounds like you’ve gone into great detail about experiences I want to experience with fresh eyes.

    I also really appreciate the GTA style cover you’ve put on the book. You definitely know your target audience

  3. This book sounds like a good book to read, if you ever go to China and from the context that is written, this book would be very useful to someone that might have never been to China or a book for those people who would like to go but are not able to. I think that if there were more books like this for all the different countries, it would be easier for people to travel and understand the country that they are visiting. It would also be good for the language barrier, when visiting other countries.

  4. I’ve been reading this book and I’m really impressed with it. It goes in detail about Chinese culture and really explains why some aspects of Chinese culture are the way they are. I think the author really hit his mark with explaining things like the things that kids in China grow up with, the religious aspect of Chinese culture, the different dynasties and cuisines, etc. It’s a great informative book!

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