Books: Childhood in China

MINOR HERESIES — John J. Espey —Knopf ($2).

Before the Japs came, life at the American Presbyterian Mission in Shanghai was tolerably peaceful. From across the fence drifted a medley of sounds: the shrill screams of a little Chinese girl whose feet were being bound for the first time; the cries in the Roman Catholic insane asylum ; the chatter of Seventh-Day Baptists; the heavy snores of the local opium addict.

When darkness fell, the click of locks and latches betrayed the arrival of the gentle nightly burglar; and often there was a series of...

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