I’ve found it difficult to get a handle on Chinese culture unless I bug my Chinese friends with more questions than they probably feel like answering, gracious though they invariably are. If you’re not brought up knowing about the Brotherhood of the Peach Orchard or the Monkey King, the Hungry Ghost Festival or the number of different names a Chinese person can have, it’s hard to find someone with the English and the patience to explain this stuff to a beginner.
So I’m extremely happy to have found a Singaporean publisher, called Asiapac, which makes it its business to explain Chinese culture to non-natives!!!!! They do lots of stuff in short graphic novel form, from summarizing 5000 years of literature to explaining why Chinese culture is so fixated on calligraphy or boys (as opposed to girls). Here are some sample titles I bought: