A story of a pair of laotong or old sames – a relationship between two women that begins when they are young girls and binds them deeper than sisterhood or marriage.
I learned so much in this book about old Chinese customs, footbinding, and the depths of filial piety. There was no recreational crying involved but it did tug at my heartstrings and kept me riveted enough to fight the beginnings of motion sickness to keep reading on the plane.
I was surprised to read that Lisa See, the author, is 1/8th Chinese (truthfully, I had expected a full Chinese author). She sounds like she’s very proud of her heritage and did a lot of research to write in a voice that’s authentic. There’s some extra material at the end of the book that talks about this. Give it a read too – it’s pretty interesting.
Snow Flower and the Secret Fan via Amazon