Book of the Month: "Fortress Besieged" by Qian Zhongshu - one of the most famous Chinese novel in the 20th Century.The English version of the book has been published by both local and western publishers (e.g.Penguin) and is available at major foreign-language book stores in Beijing. Go to find it at the bookshelves of English books by Chinese publishers on the first floor (left) of Wangfujing Foreign Book Store or third floor of Wangfujing Book Store.

You are also welcome even though you may not have read a single page of the book yet. Just join our discussion!


A masterwork of world literature, Fortress Besieged is a tale of love, marriage, calamity, disillusionment, and hope.

'This is my favourite Chinese novel'
Jung Chang, author of Wild Swans

Fortress Besieged is a classic of world literature, a masterpiece of parodic fiction that plays with Western literary traditions, philosophy and middle class Chinese society in the Republican era. The title is taken from an old French proverb, "Marriage is like a fortress besieged: those who are outside want to get in, and those who are inside want to get out". Set on the eve of the ferocious Sino-Japanese War, Fortress Besieged recounts the exuberant misadventures of the hapless hero Fang Hung-chien. This masterwork of world literature plays with Western traditions, picaresque humour, tragic-comedy, satire, Eastern philosophy and the mores of middle-class Chinese society to create its own unique feast of delights.

  • About CCC Book Club:

    The CCC Book Club is one of the earlist book clubs targeting expariates living in Beijing and the only book meeting groups focusing on China-related books for the international community.

    At the CCC' s Book Club, participants are assigned a great book to read (or selected chapters) and then asked to discuss its meanings with other book club members, using their own interpretations. All assigned books (mostly China-related fiction and non-fiction, a mix of classics and modern ones in English or with English translation) are available at CCC library and bookshop or at major foreign-language book stores where participants are encouraged to purchase their own copies. You are also welcome even though you may not have read a single page of the book yet. Just join our discussion!

    Booklist:  Click here to view the whole booklist of the past meetings.

    CCC Book Club day group:
    10:30 am, every third Wednesday of the month.

    CCC Book Club Evening Group:
    7:30 pm, every third Thursday of the month

    Note: sometimes the date is different because of holidays. So check the monthly calendar for the most up to date info during the month.

    Venue: China Culture Center, Beijing, China.

  • CCC does not offer regular set packages for this class. However we are happy to help you plan a private custom-made one. Please scroll this web page down to check non-negotiable fixed prices and propose a date for your own group. Please note that we do not create a private class or workshop and then make it available for individual people to join. We also do not contact other people to add to a group tour. Similarly, we can create custom-made private activities or events for you and your family or friends or co-workers at set-prices.