Moon Living Abroad in China
By Barbara and Stuart Strother, 2nd Edition
Paperback, Avalon Travel
Reviewed by Volker Poelzl
Moving to another country is a complex task no matter where you may go, and relocating to China is especially challenging. Fortunately, Barbara and Stuart Strother, the authors of “Moon Living Abroad in China,” pay great attention to practical detail as they guide readers through the challenging process. As with all Living Abroad guides from Avalon publications, the book has a clear layout and provides all the essential information foreigners need to know to make a successful move. This detailed step-by-step guide for expatriates is based upon the authors’ own experiences when they lived in China with their two young children. As the authors state in the introduction, “China is a challenging land and is changing unbelievably quickly,” and “Life in China can be both richly rewarding and incredibly frustrating. To live here for an extended period of time takes a great deal of flexibility and fortitude.” But they also strongly emphasize that “despite the difficulties the good news is that you’ll come away from your time in China enriched with the knowledge of a new culture and language, with amazing stories to tell and pictures to show.”
The book opens with an introductory chapter about China’s history, government, economy, people and culture, religion and the arts. This chapter also covers the logistics of a fact-finding trip and includes a suggested itinerary. The authors recommend that “if you are considering a move to China and haven’t been there yet, put this [book] down and book your flight immediately. Reading about China…cannot paint a true picture of the real thing.”
The section on "Daily Life" covers important practical aspects of living in China, such as visas and residence permits, housing considerations, language and education, health, employment, finance, communications, and transportation. The section on "Prime Living Locations" introduces readers to the various islands and the best locations for expatriates, depending upon their interests, lifestyle, and career choices. This chapter is especially useful if you are in the planning stages of your move to China and are not yet committed to a specific destination. The authors focus on the most popular destinations for expatriates, such as China’s larger cities (Beijing, Shanghai, Hongkong), but also cover other attractive regions and smaller cities.
The book concludes with a "Resources" section that includes useful information about government offices and embassies, media, communications, language and education, employment, health, transportation, financial matters, etc. There is also included a glossary, a phrase book, and a list of suggested reading and films.
This second edition of "Moon Living Abroad in China" features an improved layout and a full-color introduction with numerous photographs, but the essential material and style remain unchanged.
“Moon Living Abroad in China” is a practical and informative guide and is an indispensable companion for anyone planning on moving to China.
For more information, and for a preview of the introduction and table of contents, visit the Moon Living Abroad in China web page on the publisher's clean new website.