In China, the world’s next superpower, life is comfortable for the fortunate few. For others, it’s a hand-to-mouth struggle for a full stomach, a place to live, wages for work done, and freedom to speak openly. In a place where few things are more important than food, “Have you eaten yet?” is another way of saying hello. After traversing the country and meeting its people, Ang shares her delicious experiences with us. She tells of a clandestine cup of salty yak butter tea with a Tibetan monk during a military crackdown and explains how a fluffy spring onion omelet encapsulates China’s drive for rural development.
You’ll have lunch with some of the country's most enduring activists, savor meals with earthquake survivors, and get to know a house cleaner who makes the best fried chicken in all of Beijing. Ang bites into the gaping divide between rich and poor, urban and rural reform, intolerance for dissent, and the growing dissatisfaction with those in power. By serving these topics to us one at a time, To the People, Food Is Heaven, provides a fresh perspective beyond the country’s anonymous identity as an economic powerhouse. Ang plates a terrific, wide-ranging feast that is the new China. Have you eaten yet?
The narrator did a great job swinging between languages, and the author painted China in food.
Based on the title of the book, I was expecting the the subject to be more about food in China. The majority of the book is about the news stories the author reported on as a journalist.