Synopses & Reviews
Wittman Ah Sing is a young Chinese-American hippie in San Francisco during the late sixties. Named after America's quintessential poet, indomitably garrulous and free-spirited, Wittman is as American as James Dean. Yet he also bears a striking resemblance to Monkey, the trickster-saint of Chinese legend who helped bring the Buddhist scriptures from India. Driven by his dream of writing and staging an epic production of interwoven Chinese novels and folktales, his life becomes an extraordinary journey through an era as fantastic as his ambition told in a novel by turns surreal, exuberantly charged with spectacle, violence, and Chinese "talk-story," and wildly, bitterly funny.
"A novel of satisfying complexity and bite and verve." Anne Tyler, New Republic
"A dazzling leap of imaginative sympathy [and] narrative magic." New York Times Book Review
"It moves forward with a wild energy and generous fury...a truly syncretic American work." Village Voice Literary Supplement
"The long-awaited novel...is outrageously clever, surrealistically imaginative, mordantly witty and funny in spots. It is also densely overwritten and tedious." Publishers Weekly
"A remarkable display of wit and rage." Washington Post Book World
"Unfortunately, the book's great weakness is Wittman Ah Sing himself a hippie stereotype difficult to feel for because he does not seem real, certainly less real than some of the characters surrounding him." Library Journal
Driven by his dream to write and stage an epic stage production of interwoven Chinese novelsWittman Ah Sing, a Chinese-American hippie in the late '60s.
About the Author
Maxine Hong Kingston is Senior Lecturer for Creative Writing at the University of California, Berkeley. For her memoirs and fiction, The Woman Warrior, China Men, Tripmaster Monkey, and Hawai'i One Summer, she has earned numerous awards, among them the National Book Award, the National Book Critics Circle Award for Nonfiction, the PEN West Award for Fiction, an American Academy of Arts and Letters Award in Literature, and a National Humanities Medal from the National Endowment for the Humanities, as well as the title of "Living Treasure of Hawai'i."