Janie Chang's novel is a great novel of life in the early twentieth century in Shanghai. It's a heartbreaking story of what one girl went through, yet a story full of hope, too.
In 1908, Jialing is just a young girl when she is abandoned by her mother. Because she is Eurasian her chances in life are greatly diminished, and now without a mother, Jialing must find someone who is willing to take her in.
Many times in this novel Jialing is rescued at the last second by someone who will help her. At first it is the Yang family who take her in, and she finds a friend in Anjuin, a daughter in the family. She is given a great opportunity and allowed to attend school, giving her an education most girls do not have a chance of getting.
Yet, schooling does not open up many avenues of employment for Jialing because of her mixed heritage. Jialing is also desperate to find her mother, wanting to know what happened to her so many years ago that caused her to leave her young daughter with nothing. With some help, she attempts to locate a woman who has been gone for many years, and who she quickly realizes, she knows little about.
Chang's story features suspense, a bit of romance, a lesson in the history of Shanghai in the early 1900s, and a character who is able to persevere despite all the odds stacked against her.
Thanks to TLC Book Tours for providing a copy of this book for my review. All opinions expressed are, as always, my own.
Visit the HarperCollins' website to find more information about Dragon Springs Road.