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Qian Julie Wang

Beautiful Country: A Memoir of An Undocumented Childhood

Beautiful Country: A Memoir of An Undocumented Childhood

ISBN: 9780241514726

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A SCORCHING, POWERFUL NEW MEMOIR OF AN UNDOCUMENTED CHILDHOOD

'Hunger was a constant, reliable friend in Mei Guo. She came second only to loneliness.'

When 7-year old Qian moves to Mei Guo with her mother she doesn't know what to expect from the place, otherwise known as America, that translates to 'Beautiful Country'. In China she was the daughter of Professors, a popular student leading a comfortable middle-class life. In America she simply does not exist.

This is the story of a childhood spent in extreme poverty as an undocumented Chinese immigrant in Brooklyn. From manual labour in a sushi factory to learning English in elementary school, the days spent scavenging the neighbourhood for furniture to emergency treatment in hospital, Qian Julie Wang's memoir is an unforgettable account of what it means to live under the perpetual threat of deportation, where being seen is an act of danger. Told from a child's perspective, in a voice that is intimate, poignant and startlingly lyrical, Beautiful Country is the story of a girl who learns to first live - and then escape - an invisible life.
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