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Noies de Xangai

de Lisa See

Sèrie: Shanghai Girls (1)

MembresRessenyesPopularitatValoració mitjanaMencions
4,2952931,977 (3.81)280
In the mid 1930's two well-educated sisters from Shanghai go to Los Angeles to become brides of the "Gold Mountain men" when their family is on the verge of bankruptcy. When the get their they are detained, interrogated, and humiliated for months. When one of the sisters becomes pregnant they vow that no one will ever know.… (més)
  1. 20
    Girl in Translation de Jean Kwok (terran)
    terran: Chinese Americans, Mother and daughters, Family, Poverty, Immigrants
  2. 03
    Hotel on the Corner of Bitter and Sweet de Jamie Ford (tahcastle)
    tahcastle: Both novels illustrated the discrimination in the United States, of Japanese during the war and of the Chinese after the war.
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Es mostren 1-5 de 293 (següent | mostra-les totes)
There was so much history to learn from this book: the way that the Chinese lived with having money before Communism, effect of fighting with Japan, the way they were treated coming to the US through immigration, how Chinese were portrayed, how the Chinese felt about living. Unfortunately the story of the 2 sisters grew weary with Pearl being so down on life in the US and May being so self-serving to the glamour life. Gave a lot of credit to husband Sam putting up with his way of being treated. Daughter May was too good to be real until end of book showed her as a person. ( )
  kshydog | Dec 13, 2020 |
I often find "historical novels" not to my liking. It is difficult for an author to create a real sense of authenticity and I tend to see the missteps, the imposing of present-day values on past days, for example, or the use of speech that is not likely to represent how people really spoke in that time.

I am also tired of reading books about Chinese and Japanese families, where ancient superstition rules. Whether the narrator believes the Chinese horoscope or not, the "wisdom" is offered to the reader in the form of pithy, Confucious-type sayings. In this present case, the narrator, a women from Shanghai who begins her story in the 1930s, is a "modern" young woman. She scoffs at her mother's fears and pronouncements, especially at her projections of astrological character. However, when tragedy strikes and the two sisters are on their own, the elder, the narrator, Pearl, begins to assume her mother's mantle, in part. She recognizes her own character as a "Tiger", and her sister's as a "sheep".

While I continue to find these prejudices predictable and annoying (how "modern" I am!), I was nonetheless taken by this book. Not only does it introduce us to the Chinese culture of the time, including the use of "beautiful girls" - models who are painted for advertising purposes, but it feels emotionally real to me. The novel also exposes, in a personal way, the prejudices against Chinese immigrants in the U.S. While I was aware of the laws and practices that made any kind of success difficult for these immigrants, I did not know how it might feel, how one might make a way through such webs intact.

Somehow the author caught the time and place well, making it believable to me, and therefore I enjoyed the book and learned from it. ( )
  slojudy | Sep 8, 2020 |
I love historical fiction and especially like learning about China. This book offered a perspective on life for Chinese immigrants to the U.S. around World War II that I had never considered before. So, the historical perspective hooked me. But I have to say what I was left with had more to do with the story about two sisters sticking together through it all. I do not have a sister so I've always wondering about that dynamic. This story made me wish for that experience. See does a nice job of showing the ups and downs of the relationship, how complicated it can be.

A nice read. ( )
  jjpseattle | Aug 2, 2020 |
Very heart-wrenching, compelling story of two survivors --beautiful girls who escaped China at the end of the golden years of Shanghai and made a life in California. Well worth the read. ( )
  MMKY | Jul 3, 2020 |
For me this novel treads a lot of the same ground as China Dolls (except that China Dolls was actually published later, even if I read it before), but is a lot more mature. It takes place in the same time period, also focuses on the Chinese community in California, and both novels discuss (to varying degrees) the Japanese invasion of China and Chinese involvement in the US entertainment industry. So, if you like one, you will probably appreciate the other.

As I implied, I preferred this one. While the novel begins with Pearl (the narrator) and May (her sister) being young, immature and carefree in Shanghai, the narration "grows up" sharply as Pearl does. There is a lot less stupid "boy drama". While I gave China Dolls four stars with some reservations, Shanghai Girls has fully earnt them. (Feb 2015) ( )
  Jayeless | May 27, 2020 |
Es mostren 1-5 de 293 (següent | mostra-les totes)
Lisa See’s “Shanghai Girls” is much loftier than its cover art’s stunning portrait of beautifully adorned Asian women. The author of “Snow Flower and the Secret Fan” has written a broadly sweeping tale...
 
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For my cousin Leslee Leong, my cohort in memory keeping.
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'Our daughter looks like a South China peasant with those red cheeks,' my father complains, pointedly ignoring the soup before him. 'Can't you do something about them?'
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In the mid 1930's two well-educated sisters from Shanghai go to Los Angeles to become brides of the "Gold Mountain men" when their family is on the verge of bankruptcy. When the get their they are detained, interrogated, and humiliated for months. When one of the sisters becomes pregnant they vow that no one will ever know.

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