Frances Wood, Hand-grenade Practice in Peking Slightly Foxed bookshelves summer read

Hand-grenade Practice in Peking | From the Slightly Foxed bookshelves

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‘I see Frances Wood in that great tradition of intrepid British women explorers, like Mary Kingsley and Gertrude Bell. She sets out for China in 1975, when the Cultural Revolution is still going strong . . .

Like her explorer predecessors, she is indomitable, but in her case it is because of her heroic sense of humour and her eye for the absurd. Hand-Grenade Practice in Peking – her account of the year she spent as a student first at the Foreign Languages Institute in Peking and then at Peking University – is a very funny book.’

Extract from Oliver Pritchett’s preface


For those of you who have yet to pick up this favourite from the Slightly Foxed bookshelves, we’re pleased to bring you news of our featured summer read. Based on the letters Frances Wood wrote home in 1975‒6, Hand-grenade Practice in Peking is both affecting and hilarious, a unique insight into a mysterious and painful moment in China’s history.

Please find a link to an extract below, together with further recommendations for summer reading.

With best wishes, as ever, from the SF office staff
Jennie, Anna, Hattie & Jess

Read an extract


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