Paul Yee has written over twenty books about the history and communities of Chinese Canadians. His best-known books for younger readers are Ghost Train (Governor General’s Award, 1996), Tales from Gold Mountain, and Roses Sing on New Snow. He has published picture books, juvenile fiction, as well as books for teenage readers. A historian by training and interest, Yee’s non-fiction includes Saltwater City: an Illustrated History of the Chinese in Vancouver (1988, 2006) and Chinatown (2006). Yee was born in Spalding, Saskatchewan, grew up in Vancouver, and now lives in Toronto. He has travelled to both the Atlantic and Pacific coasts to present his stories.
His play, Jade in the Coal, was mounted at Frederic Wood Theatre in Vancouver, B.C., November 25 to December 4, 2010. The story is set in the coal mining town of Cumberland, B.C., in 1900. The play was performed in Chinese and English, and involved an international cast. Canadian actors were complemented by three opera artists from Guangzhou, China, one from Singapore, and an opera master based in Vancouver.