What We Were Promised by: Lucy Tan
Newcomer Tan is a natural storyteller. Using smooth prose, carefully developed characters, and Shanghai itself set against the backdrop of greater China, her debut novel brings the Zhen family back to Shanghai to join the upper class after twenty years in the U.S. We see this life through the eyes of characters like husband Wei and wife Lina, but we also see life through the eyes of Sunny, a housekeeper who sends part of her wages back to her family. Tan employs secrets and family drama to drive the plot, all the while examining themes of rich and poor, individualism and tradition, future and past, boredom and ambition. The real joy of this book is getting lost in the characters, some of whom will remain with you long after you have finished the novel. “Lucy Tan is an author to watch.” –Chris Schluep, An Amazon Best Book of 2018
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