Little Soldiers: An American Boy, a Chinese School, and the Global Race to Achieve

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Product Details

Harper Paperbacks
Publish Date
5.3 X 1.0 X 8.1 inches | 0.6 pounds
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About the Author

Lenora Chu is a Chinese American writer whose work explores the intersection of culture, policy, and behavior. Her stories and op-eds have appeared in the New York Times, Wall Street Journal, Business Insider, Christian Science Monitor, and on various NPR shows. Raised in Texas, Chu holds degrees from Stanford and Columbia Universities.


"Anyone will understand [China] better after reading this book.... Chu vividly sketches these differences [between Chinese and American school systems] in terms that will make readers ponder what they actually think about rote memorization and parents question their preferences for their own children."--New York Times
"This engaging narrative is personalized by Chu's often humorous recollections of attending American schools as the daughter of immigrants. Little Soldiers offers fascinating peeks inside the world's largest educational system and at the future intellectual "soldiers" American kids will be facing."--Booklist
"Undoubtedly revealing, fascinating, and filled with 'aha' moments."--Christian Science Monitor
"This is a rare look inside the gates of Chinese schools that helps demystify many traits and behaviors of the Chinese people."--Deborah Fallows, contributing writer for The Atlantic and author of Dreaming in Chinese
"Lenora Chu, a gifted journalist, has written a fascinating comparison of the US and Shanghai education systems. Little Soldiers offers important insights into the strengths and weaknesses of each. There is much to be learned here about the elements of a better education system for the 21st century."--Tony Wagner, Expert in Residence, Harvard University Innovation Lab and author of The Global Achievement Gap and Creating Innovators
"An investigative look at the Chinese educational system and how it produces such a large number of high-performing students."--Book Riot
"This provocative investigation examines cultural differences between the East and West, and the benefits and shortcomings of how both approach education."--Real Simple, "The Best New Books to Read This Month"
"No reporter has gone as deep as she has into what makes Chinese and American schools different today, or given more reasons we should not copy the Chinese. Yet her rollicking account has hope for both cultures, because they share a deep interest in what children learn."--Washington Post
"Chu's narrative is told with the honesty of a journalist, allowing readers to understand the conclusions she draws from her journey but also to form their own view of Chinese education. For anyone who wishes to expand their understanding about Chinese society and its impact on education."--Library Journal, starred review
"This book had me at page one! Whip smart, hilariously funny, and shocking. A must-read."--Amy Chua, author of The Battle Hymn of the Tiger Mother and The Triple Package