Interview with Nicki Chen about her Novel "Tiger Tail Soup" | Speaking of China

21 Responses

  1. Constance - Foreign Sanctuary
    Constance - Foreign Sanctuary September 19, 2014 at 9:36 am | | Reply

    I have reader of Nicki’s blog for awhile now (actually, it is through her guest post that I found out about ‘Speaking of China) and I always love the stories she shares. I enjoy her style of writing and I am sure that this book is just as captivating.

  2. ordinary malaysian
    ordinary malaysian September 19, 2014 at 1:29 pm | | Reply

    ‘Tiger Tail Soup’ is catchy! It must be more like a meal – the book, that is. Those tales are fascinating. The graveyard ghost, just wondering… Fujian was where our ancestors came from too. I believe Nicki had a rich and wonder life with her husband, with so many tales and adventures to share. Unfortunately, I avoid internet transactions. So will wait for the hard copy if they are available here. Anyway, congratulations to Nicki!

    1. ordinary malaysian
      ordinary malaysian September 19, 2014 at 1:34 pm | | Reply

      ah, ah, typo error, should read ‘wonderful life’

    2. Nicki Chen
      Nicki Chen September 20, 2014 at 6:03 am | | Reply

      Thank you, Ordinary Malaysian. I hope you’ll get a chance to read Tiger Tail Soup. You’ll probably have to ask a bookstore to order if you don’t want to order online. I do have international distributors. They include: Baker & Taylor, Ingram, and the Books-In-Print data base.

      I’d love to hear if you’re able to get a book, and if so, what you think of it.

      I have one review on Amazon from a Malaysian reader. She’s married to an Englishman, so the name she goes by in English is Janet Williams. You can read her review here.

      1. ordinary malaysian
        ordinary malaysian September 20, 2014 at 8:53 am | | Reply

        @Nicki Chen, thanks for the link. Just read the reviews, fascinating. Will check out the local stores and see whether they have the book in stock or whether they will accept an individual order. But pretty occupied these currently.

  3. Rdm
    Rdm September 19, 2014 at 11:14 pm | | Reply

    Interesting interview, and the “tale of Tiger tail soup” was surreally poignant. Wow, I just used the rhyme. haha

    Well, Fujian caught my attention because my grandparents were originally from Fujian, Hui’an.

    Maybe this is also anecdote from my parents. I can’t verify if my knowledge of Fujian from my grandparents are true since I’ve never been to Fujian.

    –> Fujian is the region that was naturally separated from all northern parts of China by those ranges of mountains which make the Fujian region as “Beauty of the Nature”. The protection given by the nature makes the Fujian region as “Haven” for scholars, diplomats, all Dynasty refugees to come in exile every time there were warring periods in China history.

    –> Quanzhou used to be the World Largest port when China was at its peak. Since “Hokkien” or “Fujian hua” was the main dialect in Fujian, a lot of loan words from Hokkien can be traced in Korean, Japanese, Vietnamese language. Just google “Minnan” and you can explore in wikipedia because giving a link in Jocelyn blog is a pain.

    Needless to say Majority of Taiwanese speak “Hokkien” and those Chinese diaspora during Tang Dynasty, known as “Tan People” who migrated to Malaysia, Singapore, Burma, Indonesia all speak Hokkien compared to Guangdong who speak Cantonese who migrated a lot to Canada, and the US.

    The most famous Hokkien word in Today usage is “Tea” which comes from “Te” Hokkien language since China is the home of Tea, when trading from the most busiest port Quanzhou, it’s understandable cultural exchange could have happened a lot.

    –> Fujian is also the scholars feeder in China since it’s the region that harbors those scholars fled from every Dynasty breakup.

    –> To invade Fujian, Japanese has to rely more on their Navy power rather than infantry troops.

    That’s all I have to say.

    1. Nicki Chen
      Nicki Chen September 20, 2014 at 6:21 am | | Reply

      Rdm, you had so many interesting things to say about Fujian. When we visited Xiamen in 1983, my husband pointed to the rocky mountains all around us and said, “With such rocky soil, this has always been a hard place to make a living. That’s why over the years so many people left Fujian Province for countries around SE Asia.” Driving around, we saw people building fences from big slabs of granite. It seemed like the hard way to make a fence.

      I’ve been working on a post about Fujian’s oolong tea that I’ve scheduled for the second week of October. It’s really an interesting subject.

  4. chinaelevatorstories
    chinaelevatorstories September 19, 2014 at 11:46 pm | | Reply

    Great interview! I love the story behind the title of the book, especially since it’s based on a real life experience.

  5. Sveta
    Sveta September 21, 2014 at 3:40 pm | | Reply

    Really wonderful book and I loved reading it 🙂 Here’s my review of the book

    1. Nicki Chen
      Nicki Chen September 24, 2014 at 12:29 am | | Reply

      Thank you, Sveta, for the review.

  6. evelyneholingue
    evelyneholingue October 9, 2014 at 4:57 am | | Reply

    So great to read more about Nicki, aside from her great blog, on another interesting blog. Although I am not married to a man from a different culture, the fact that I have lived abroad, far from my native land, for many years triggers my interest for people, and especially women, who are living either far from their native land or have married outside of their safety net. I haven’t read Nicki’s book yet, but this interview is certainly convincing me to get a copy. Thank you to Jocelyn and Nicki for this good post.

  7. Nicki Chen
    Nicki Chen October 9, 2014 at 8:46 am | | Reply

    Evelyne, I’m glad you stopped by to read the interview. Jocelyn is such a supportive blogger. I recommend her blog and also the anthologies she’s contributed to: Unsavory Elements and How Does One Dress to Buy Dragonfruit?

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