Sounds of the River (Paperback)

A Young Man's University Days in Beijing

By Da Chen

Harper Perennial, 9780060958725, 320pp.

Publication Date: February 4, 2003

List Price: 14.99*
* Individual store prices may vary.


In this "equally beguiling sequel to his acclaimed memoir, Colors of the Mountain" (Kirkus Reviews), teenager Da Chen takes his first train ride away from the farm he was raised on to his new university life in Beijing. He soon faces a host of ghastly challenges, including poor living conditions, lack of food, and suicidal roommates. Undaunted by these hurdles, and armed with a dogged determination to learn English and "all things Western," he competes to win a chance to study in America -- a chance that rests in the shrewd and corrupt hands of the almighty professors.

Poetic, hilarious, and heartbreaking, Sounds of the River is a gloriously written coming-of-age saga that chronicles a remarkable journey -- a travelogue of the heart.

About the Author

Da Chen is the author of Colors of the Mountain, a New York Times bestseller; Sounds of the River: A Young Man's University Days in Beijing; Brother; and two books for children, Wandering Warrior and China's Son: Growing Up in the Cultural Revolution. He grew up in China during the Cultural Revolution and now lives in New York.

Praise For Sounds of the River: A Young Man's University Days in Beijing

Readers will already be looking forward to the next installment.
— Kirkus (Starred Review) certainly likable. And his transformation from country boy to big city college professor moves briskly and entertainingly along.
— San Francisco Chronicle Book Review

“A story about suppression, humiliation, vindication and, ultimately, triumph.”
— New York Times Book Review