May and Pearl, two sisters living in Shanghai in the mid-1930s, are beautiful, sophisticated, and well-educated, but their family is on the verge of bankruptcy. Hoping to improve their social standing, May and Pearl's parents arrange for their daughters to marry "Gold Mountain men" who have come from Los Angeles to find brides.
But when the sisters leave China and arrive at Angel's Island (the Ellis Island of the West, where they are detained, interrogated, and humiliated for months) they feel the harsh reality of leaving home. And when May discovers she's pregnant, the situation becomes even more desperate. The sisters make a pact that no one can ever know.
A novel about two sisters, two cultures, and the struggle to find a new life in America while bound to the old, Shanghai Girls is a fresh, fascinating adventure from beloved and best-selling author Lisa See.
©2009 Random House; (P)2009 Random House
"A buoyant and lustrous paean to the bonds of sisterhood." (Booklist)
A very good read for those who love historical novels and novels about women and the "age they grow up in". A good novel for those who wish to learn about the oppression of women's personal growth based on the times they are raised in, and how some manage to survive and surmount in overcoming the restrictions in their lives.
This is my 1st Lisa See book and will not be my last. I got to know all the characters so well...it was a book that I was disappointed when it ended. i learned so much about the history of China and its people. The voice of Janet Song, the narrator, was so engaging. I loved this book!
I ejnoyed listening to this book as the story was both interesting and exciting. The story is complex and it makes you both smile and cry. The reader became like a friend and I was sad when the book was finished. The fact that the story is built on historical facts makes it even more compelling. I can warmly recommend this book.
I would recommend See's story for those who are ready to learn about the culture of the east, mixed in with a rich, emotional tale of perseverance and complex relationships. The reader Janet Song's voice is very mezmorizing also. Such a captivating tale.
I enjoyed this book so much!! I love when I come across a book that I cant get enough of. I'm so glad I took a chance on something different then my usual read. This book was so refreshing!! Loved It!!!
I was so hooked I actually bought credits above my membership credits to get the sequel 'Dreams of Joy.' I felt close to the characters, it illuminated 'mother/daughter' relationships and I even learned a little history in an entertaining way. Marvelous story, good narrator, though sometimes her way of reading half a sentence, pause, half a sentence seemed too pronounced. Not enough of a bother to take away a star from this great tale!
The characters are so well developed. Even though they came from a completely different culture I felt I knew each of them. It is an interesting story of the Chinese in America in the mid 20th century.
Have read Lisa See's other books, and this one is also very entertaining. Great reading voice, easy to listen to. The ending was bogus, though - obviously a set up for a sequel, but rather disappointing. Little closure.
I loved the story, especially the historical aspects of it. When I came to the end, I thought I had neglected to download the final chapters. It is obviously a set up for a sequel, which I plan to purchase. I just wish I would have realized beforehand.
I loved this book about sisters. The bond that exists between the two women is what drives this amazing book. The assumtions that the two women make about each other gently reveal themselves. A perfect book.
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