THE FAMILY STORY BEHIND A CHINESE RESTAURANT
Sun Li’s parents emigrate to the Netherlands in 1980 with empty pockets and five children. They open a Chinese restaurant in Friesland. With the help of the whole family, they manage to keep their restaurant afloat over the subsequent decades. At the same time, Sun and her brother and sisters are encouraged to do their best in school, and Sun ends up studying law. Although her parents are pleased with their children’s success, it also saddles them with a problem: who will take over the restaurant when they retire?
The Sweet Sour Taste of Dreams is about a family who were Chinese when they arrived in the Netherlands, but gradually began to merge with the country they emigrated to, just like its cuisine. In her personal, often tragicomic and moving story, Sun Li also records a piece of our cultural history. Now that the highly-educated children of immigrants are able to choose different careers than their parents, the age of a family-run Chinese restaurant in every village is coming to an end.
PRESS ON THE SWEET SOUR TASTE OF DREAMS:
‘Sun Li’s sentences are alive with crispy chicken, sizzling oil, and thick chow mein with steamed vegetables, which are so characteristic for the Dutch Chinese-Indonesian restaurants. Her prose is straightforward, fluent, witty, and apt. A successful, tragicomic coming-of-age.’ – **** DE VOLKSKRANT
‘After reading this debut you will never look at your local Chinese takeaway the same way again.’ – ZINContact us