I ordered the Henry and the Kite Dragon from Amazon at the end of last year, I think the same day Andy showed me the galleys. I could barely look at them just then, sitting there in their apartment, with Bruce having just passed. The book has finally been published, and it arrived this weekend. It is simply beautiful The illustrations are so lush and detailed. And Bruce's words - so simple and elegant. I could almost hear his clear precise voice speaking the words. I wish he were here to see this book. He leaves such a rich legacy, and we are certainly enriched by it. But we are still poorer for having to miss what could have come next. I miss you, Bruce. I thank the stars I was lucky to know you. Thanks for this lovely work.
I have many sweet memories of Bruce but one that sticks out is of a New Year's Eve party we both attended in 1998. Bruce had given our host a book as a Christmas gift and was reading aloud from it to all the guests. I don't really remember the topic, but it was very funny and Bruce read beautifully, and I remember laughing and thinking how lucky I was that I was being read to, and that I was surrounded by friends that I loved, on a holiday that makes so many people feel alone. I felt that we had tapped into something rare and fine for that moment, and it was Bruce that created it.
I clicked on Bruce's website today to see whether he had any new work & discovered the terrible news of his death. I am deeply saddened. Unfortunately, I didn't have the chance to meet Bruce face-to-face, although I kept saying that I would meet up with him for coffee or drinks or something the next time I was in New York. I can't believe I never made it to New York in time. I "met" Bruce through my editor, Trena Keating, who sent him the galley of my book, Paper Daughter, to blurb. He wrote a tremendously kind comment about it & we exchanged a few letters & emails. I emailed him on the day of the September 11th attacks, as I did other friends in New York, to make sure he was okay. He responded with a gripping, visceral account of what he was seeing. I've saved that message, but even without referring back to it, I remember the image of his partner and him watching the fires burn from their rooftop. It added to my understanding of what was happening in New York on that day. He enriched my life in these ways without ever being a physical presence. It's a testament to his gift as a writer. I only wish he'd had more time here. My sympathy goes out to his family, particularly his partner.
A card Bruce sent us in the early 1990s - one with "BruceEdwardHall.com" below a picture of five women (one of them his mother?) - fluttered from my bookshelf this past weekend. Tonight I went to his website and lost my breath. We first met at Syracuse Univ. and then about seven years later, in 1989, we ran into each other in NYC. We were surprised to find outselves living one block from one another in censored's Kitchen. Bruce spent the holidays with Ron and me throughout the 1980s but we drifted apart thereafter. I have a lengthly handwritten letter Bruce wrote from Xian, China in March of 1982. It begins, "I have just had two of the most wonderful days of my life... [16 pages follow]...see you for dinner Saturday." Sleep well sweet Prince. Tim & Ron
I just received a letter from Andy, informing me of the passing of Bruce. I met Bruce way back when he was furnishing his new/old Victorian house in Hudson. His first dinner party, at his new home, he served two roasted chickens upside down on the platter! We always laughed about that presentation. When I won two tickets in a lottery drawn for Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis' estate, which was being auctioned off at Sotheby's in 1996, who else would I call to share my good fortune with? I took the train down from Hudson and it was a fun day in Manhattan with Bruce. That was the first time I met Andy, his good friend. I have been searching for both my grandparent's history on my mother's side of the family for years. Just like Bruce did with his book about his father's side of the family. Looking for stories and the ghosts of his Great-grandparents. Odd thing is I was in the Czech Republic, receiving my Great-grandfather's death certificate, on Friday Oct. 31st. the same day that Bruce died. It has taken me 52 years to get that littled piece of paper. I was hoping that Bruce would read my newspaper article about my trip to the Czech Republic and finding my roots. He would appreciate all my hard work on uncovering the past, but he left us before I could get back. Life on Earth is just part of our journey through time. Death is just a step in our adventure into the Universe. We all meet up again in a circle of Light. Bruce has left us with many stories on paper and in our hearts. I will miss you dear friend.
You are in my thoughts and prayers. This year I tried to send out your Christmas card first...what a shock to get a copy the the obituaries in return...we go back a long long time and you never did forget me...I remember when you were the stand in for Poor Little Lambs and had to perform - or when we went to look at the house in Hudson... only you could turn that into a book! I am glad that we stayed in touch...I will miss knowing you are there.. God Bless you... Glenn
My husband, Lee Zimet, and I met Bruce through our friend Mike DiBlasi, who was our "architect in residence" at our former home in Glen Ridge, New Jersey. We had the pleasure of entertaining Bruce at that house several times and shared many lively discussions, particularly about Hudson, New York. Our hearts go out to his family, his partner, and his many friends at this tragic and untimely loss. Our prayers are with you, Bruce. Be at peace.
I knew Bruce only a few years, but in a very short time I came to respect him and really enjoy his wit and knowledge and experience. He worked with me as a writer on a newsletter for a year. We did butt heads a few times, and I think that stubborness on both our parts is what brought us together as friends & colleagues. I just remember always being glad to see him when he came around the office, or stopped by an event I was hosting. His strength is one part of him that will always astound me. I am happy that we had the chance to know each other. I know his spirit is strong and vibrant and soaring through the universe.
I had been warned that Bruce might not like me, that he did not like everyone that he met. I had been warned further that he had a razor-sharp wit that, when directed at you, could be lethal. Fortunately, as we got to know (and like) each other very well, I found that that razor-sharp wit was usually reserved for those unfortunate byproducts of too many child-safety laws, those who were destined to choke on a Lego that wasn’t marked “DO NOT SWALLOW”. Those who are probably with him now in heaven because God is infinitely merciful—much to Bruce’s chagrin. He seemed to be at his best, and at his funniest, when he was mad. But that was because he had standards—something that people drop or compromise too easily these days. He was a good, loyal and supportive friend. I am grateful to have known him but sorry that it was for such a short time.
I met Bruce a number of years ago at Grace Church in Manhattan and I was quickly attracted to his great sense of humor and his unique perspective on life. I remember after knowing him just a short time, we went to brunch with a group of friends and the way we bantered back and forth, folks assumed we were old friends. I especially enjoyed hearing Bruce tell stories about his various adventures. My favorite story was about the time the rug in his dining room at his house in Hudson caught fire. He related to me how the fire department pulled the smoldering rug out on to the sidewalk and hosed it off. This caused it to freeze to the sidewalk where it remained for quite a while. I will greatly miss Bruce and my thoughts and prayers are with his partner and family during this difficult time.
Bruce was a real Renaissance man, with a vast knowledge about everything from English villages and the Titanic to the history of Chinatown and Broadway theatre. He was a wonderful brunch companion and a great friend in times of distress. He has enriched my life immeasurably, which is the best one can say about any man. "Good night, sweet prince, and flights of angels sing thee to thy sleep."
My fond memories of Bruce are the Sunday lunches after church when a group of us would usually walk to a resurant in the East Village. One afternoon we ate lunch and then talked and laughed our way through the afternoon never leaving the table until it was time to eat again. The waiter brought us the dinner menue and we shared another meal. He was generous and seemed to love life and at the same time face mysterious death with courage and faith.
Knowing Bruce has enriched my life. His wit and elegance never failed to delight and inspire. Wonderful memories of his waltzing at the Russian Nobility Balls will live on always. He was a really top person and a success at many things, but most of all, a success at what truly matters -- love, friendship, faith and forgiveness. Thank you, AP, for your courageous love and steadfastness. From "Charlotte's Web:"It is not often that someone comes along who is a true friend and a good writer."
I always had the impression that Bruce's career, with its ups and downs, would be very stressful. So I asked him about it recently. He said he'd never worried about money, just did what seemed right at the time, and things always seemed to work out. I'm sure this fortitude contributed greatly to his rich life!
Bruce was a very special person. His sparkling wit, endearing personality, and consideration of family and friends will live on, not only through his work, but in the hearts of all who knew and loved him.
Shalom to Huntington, W.Va. It's so good to hear the good reports of how the spirit has been moving. I was a little surprised that on your comment page none of the more adequate ministers didn't explain more about the spirit and it's manifestations.....
Are you still in Chinatown? I find your writings fascinating. I would like to talk with you more. Please email me back.
THE GOOD NEWS: John 3:16 says God loves us so much that he gave his ONLY son so that we may have eternal life. " ...If you confess with your mouth, 'Jesus is Lord,' and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved. For it is with your heart that you believe and are justified, and it is with your mouth that you confess and are saved." Romans 6:23 NIV"For the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord" Romans 10:9-10 NIV. "If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just and will forgive us our sins and purify us from all unrighteousness."1 John 1:9 NIV. Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; the old has gone, the new has come!" 2 Corinthians 5: 17 NIV. Have you accepted Jesus Christ as your personal savior? Call 1888Needhim.
Hi Bruce! I thought I would take a look at some of your books. I'll talk with you soon. Toni
I've been following your success from afar. You have had a lot. Who, me? I was your brother-in-law about 33 years ago.
You are gifted writer and your site is great! God's blessings to all!
you have a wonderful site. i wish you great literary success. peace.
May you be blessed with the good and beautiful of life. May you live in freedom of thought and education. Follow ancient philosophy of ethics in all things you. Happiness and content are yours for the asking.
and... I remember Hoi Hor's house has those old pictures ( black and white) do you think that your great grandfather might be in one of those pix>??
Hi hall: My name is Keith, my chinese name is Kei Foon and my last name is Hor. Guess what , i was born and raised in the village that you've mentioned in your book. We are from the same ancestor. And the picture in your book (the guy) looks exactly the same with my friend he's name is " Hor Hoi". My father said that you and him are related because we have the book in our house. The book listed all the mumbers in our family and you and him are from the same branch. More close than me and you. ANd i think the picture of the ancestor hall in your book isnt correct. Our ancestor hall looks different , actually we have three ancestor hall in the village. i'm going back to the village three weeks later, and i'll take some picture of it. If you want, ask me. Byebye
will be looking for your book. I was born in NYC and my dad was an On Leong member.
Second time I visited, but did not sign in last time. Neat website, and am interested in your books. See you in July.
How do you do Mr. Hall, it is good to get in touch with you. I trust you are in good health and happy. Visiting the MoCA last month, I was very happy to get your web page, and also to know that there might be the opportunity of a guided tour in your company. I do not know if I will be able to make it for April 20th., but I will certainly get in touch with you before my next trip. The first time I got in touch with your writings was last year. Coming back from New York, I was fortunate to get the Time Out magazine and read with great interest and delight, your generous article. Next step, I got Tea that burns through Amazon. I am reading it and believe me, if I loved the chinese culture before thanks to the infinite ways in which its spirit manifests itself, now I feel closer through their suffering and hardship. Thank you for youself. María Mercedes Márquez
Thanks for coming Mr. Hall to our school
R0fl from M.A.T as well... very descriptive writing... in a way
oh yeah, we have been reading your works on chinatown and i think the writing is fascinating. Keep up with the good work
Hey we r from MAT. R u visiting our school?
Hey.. me from M.A.T.. we have been studying your books and i think it is great
Bruce, I just finished reading 'Tea that Burns' the second time, and I found it even more impressive. Well done!We met at the Chinatown museum reception in August 2000 when I presented the CD Rom on Chinatowns in North America. I am working on one about New York's Chinatown. It is about 80% finished. I think it complement your book very well. I like to show it to you and see what you think. Bill Chu.
Interesting. So can I have a copy of this book "Tea that Burns"? For those who are interested more about your ancestry, please visit my website (www.taishan.com). :)
Successful writer, actor, puppeter, "Muppeter". None of it is at all surprising to me, having briefly experienced and shared in your unique creativity in early teenhood. Wishing you well in all your endeavors and planning to read some of your work as soon as possible. - Mike
Received a copy of your book Tea That Burns, and was so engrossed in it that I read it in two sitting which is very unusual for me. My own roots run parallel to your own in America and New York, as well, from the same Toishan district in China. We could even be related. Been to China to trace my roots, and it is something that every Chinese-American should do. Heard a quote recently that said that being Chinese is more of a state of mind rather than being a citizen of either PRC or ROC, and your book reinforced that thought. Can't wait for your nexts book.
I was totally engrossed reading about your family history and how it intertwined with the history of New York's Chinatown on your web site pages. Now I just can't wait to read your book "Tea That Burns: A Family Memoir of Chinatown." Thank you for the memories.
As historian of Bradley Beach, NJ, I enjoyed reading your book "Tea That Burns" and the chapter on my town. Now I am writing a book about Bradley Beach and want to include passages from your book, but I need your permission. Also, would you send me a personal blurb to put in my book? Thank you. BTW, great website. You and your sister are to be congratulated. I hope to hear from you soon. Thanks again.
Many thanks for today's wonderful walking tour, sponsored by the Museum of the Chinese in America. Thanks, too, for posting the AMERICAN HERITAGE article, which allows people who missed the tour to see some of its highlights. I am a professional tour guide who spends many hours trekking visitors around town, so I appreciate the many insights I gained from your tour. Given the vast gulf of misunderstanding -- a gulf of language, culture, and stereotyping -- that separates the Chinese from their European neighbors, it is extremely difficult for us pale folk to learn the history of Chinese in New York. Thanks for showing me the tunnel (to my knowledge, no white tour guides know that it exists) and the "missable" landmarks of a remarkable community.
My husband & I enjoyed your talk at the library in Queens. Very informtive & there was lots of stuff on chinatown I knew but sort of forgot. He is just starting to look into all the stuff on families & you helped him along. Thank you.
Read TEA THAT BURNS in one sitting and found it fascintating. Being on the west coast, it was interesting to read the unexotized history of the Chinese in NYC. Thank you and your sister for the website
Someone dropped a link on www.abuzz.com and here I am.It's title was "Educated Men and Prostitutes" on June 29.My grandfather was born on Pearl Street,(or maybe my greatgrandfather?)when it was an Irish neighborhood.I'm definitely going to take out your books!
Brilliant and a must read (Tea...) On my list!! God Bless you & hope to see you.
It warms my heart and make me proud to see that you are successful and have found your niche. I enjoyed reading your works. With love, Glenn
fascinating. i just love reading about ...cultural diversity.
I read Tea That Burns for my junior essay; if I do a good enough job it may end up on the book list next year. Do I get a commission from those sales? Whenever we come up to NYC next you'll have to show me around Chinatown again...
I guess now I know why you held me so spellbound in Jr. High. My mom was always curious how I could spend so many hours on the phone!! I look forward to picking up one of your books and curling up with the memory! Congratulations on, what obviously is, your greet success! Love from an ORIGINAL fan! - Wendy
I loved attending your reading of "Tea That Burns," which is a wonderful book! I enjoyed your first book, but your style and confidence as a writer has grown - your prose is really gorgeous. If you were a girl Oprah would be begging you to be on her show. Thanks also for your lovely comments about my book "Who Killed Blanche Dubois?" on Amazon.com. xoxo Dee Dee
Congratulations to Bruce Edward Hall and Judy Cox on this fabulous website - much material from this intense and stylish author. I am glad to see, in the interview, how little the author has mellowed over the years.
Dear Bruce: Greetings from your old New York Magazine editor. Your Web site is fascinating. And what a fine piece of work that American Heritage article is--no wonder it won the Lowell Thomas Award. I look forward to reading (and rereading) "Tea That Burns." I know very well how evocatively you write, so I am looking forward to a delectable read.
Beautiful Web site! I had a handful of chocolates from the dinner party but they made their way into my boyfriend's mouth and I never got to have any....what should I do???!
Bruce, I thoroughly enjoyed the lecture you gave at the NYPL last week. Like you, I was very curious about Chinatown life in earlier times. My father emigrated to NY in the early 1940's. My mother and I arrived later, in 1953, when I was about 5 years old. Our family moved to the corner building on Pell and Doyers Streets in 1960. I had heard stories about opium dens and underground tunnels, but was not sure if they were real. Your lecture confirm all this. I'm planning to buy your book soon, so that I can get a thorough grounding of Chinatown subculture in the past. Thanks.
What's up Bruce? Sorry I missed you last time you were in Florida-next time-or maybe I will be in the city one day! Cousin Ben III
Life of the Gay Kings and Queens of England? Whatever next. Do you need some local research done? I am amazed I have such an accomplished friend. All the best, Bruce
I am very proud of my brother, Bruce Edward, of whom this site is all about. Please be sure to read some of his articles and books ... and check back often ... we will post info about new articles and books as they are published.
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