In 1972, Jan Wong became one of only two Westerners admitted to Beijing University at the height of the Cultural Revolution. One day, a student, Yin Luoyi, sought Jan's assistance in going to the United States. Wong, then a starry-eyed Maoist, reported Yin to the authorities. Yin promptly disappeared.
Now, thirty-three years later, Wong returns to Beijing to search for the woman who has haunted her conscience. She hopes to apologise, perhaps somehow to try to make amends. At the very least, she wants to find out whether Yin has survived. Preoccupied by the past, fascinated by China's present and future, Jan Wong searches out old friends, foes and comrades in this half-familiar city, finally uncovering the truth about the woman she wronged. Chinese Whispers tells a unique and unforgettable story of communism and capitalism, of guilt and atonement, of remembering and forgetting.
Jan Wong is a third-generation Canadian, born and raised in Montreal. She was the acclaimed Toronto Globe and Mail's Beijing correspondent for the from 1988 to 1994. A graduate of McGill University, Beijing University and the Columbia University Graduate School of Journalism, her first book, Red China Blues: My Long March From Mao to Now, was named one of Time magazine's top ten books of 1996. She lives in Toronto.