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Cover for Mona in the Promised Land

Mona in the Promised Land

A Novel (Vintage Contemporaries)

Gish Jen


List Price: 16.95*
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From the acclaimed, award-winning author of Thank You, Mr. Nixon comes a “hilariously funny and seriously important” novel (Amy Tan) about American multiculturalism and a Chinese American teenager doing her best to fit in–even if it means converting to Judaism.

In these pages, acclaimed author Gish Jen introduces us to teenaged Mona Chang, who in 1968 moves with her newly prosperous family to Scarshill, New York. Here, the Chinese are seen as "the new Jews." What could be more natural than for Mona to take this literally—even to the point of converting? As Mona attends temple "rap" sessions and falls in love (with a nice Jewish boy who lives in a tepee), Jen introduces us to one of the most charming and sweet-spirited heroines in recent fiction, a girl who can wisecrack with perfect aplomb even when she's organizing the help in her father's pancake house. On every page, Gish Jen sets our received notions spinning with a wit as dry as a latter-day Jane Austen's.

Praise For Mona in the Promised Land: A Novel (Vintage Contemporaries)

A New York Times Notable Book

“Both hilariously funny and seriously important.” —Amy Tan

“A shining example of a multicultural message delivered with the wit and bite of art. . . . Gish Jen creates a particular world where dim sum is as American as apple pie.” —Los Angeles Times

“Hopeful and smart, a rare combination.” —The New York Times Book Review

“Hilarious and dazzling. . . . This firmly plotted novel has a raucous good time.” —The Boston Globe

“Funny, headlong and completely delightful. . . . A light-hearted novel of radiant charm and human warmth.” —Cynthia Ozick

Vintage, 9780679776505, 320pp.

Publication Date: April 1, 1997

About the Author

GISH JEN is the author of four novels, a book of stories, and two books of nonfiction, The Girl at the Baggage Claim and Tiger Writing. Her honors include the Lannan Literary Award for fiction and the Mildred and Harold Strauss Living Award from the American Academy of Arts & Sciences. She teaches from time to time in China and otherwise lives with her husband and two children in Cambridge, Massachusetts.