China has become one of the largest study and teach-abroad, travel, and business destinations in the world. Yet few books offer a diversity of perspectives and locales for Westerners considering the leap. This unique collection of letters offers a rarely seen, intimate, and refreshingly honest view of living and working in China. Here, ordinary people—recent college graduates, teachers, professors, engineers, lawyers, computer whizzes, and parents— recount their experiences in venues ranging from classrooms to marketplaces to holy mountains. The writers are genuine participants in the daily life of their adopted country, and woven throughout their correspondence is the compelling theme of outsiders coping in a culture that is vastly foreign to them and the underlying love-hate struggle it engenders. We follow their initial highs; the shift to general discomfort and then to full-blown culture shock; and slowly, the return of a sense of balance, identity, and normalcy; and finally, the decision to return home or stay. Written in a down-to-earth, personal, often humorous, always authentic style, these tales of trials, successes, and failures offer invaluable insight into a country that remains endlessly fascinating.