Sunday, May 10, 2009

67 - Peony in Love; Lisa See

I started this audio book about a week ago, and was immediately hooked (even though I've been in a bit of a reading slump). The reader Jodi Long was amazing. I have also started Lisa's soon to be released at the end of May (it's wonderful): Shanghai Girls: A Novel

It seems Lisa See has helped me to ease out of my slump thanks to her beautiful way with words.

Peony in Love: A Novel

about the book
"Peony is the cherished only child of the first wife of a wealthy Chinese nobleman. Yet she is betrothed to a man she has never met and, as her sixteenth birthday approaches, she has neither seen nor spoken to any man other than her father and has never ventured outside the cloistered women's quarters of the Chen Family Villa. She is trapped like a good-luck Chinese epic opera The Peony Pavilion mirror her own longings. Though raised to be obedient, Peony has dreams of her own.

Her father engages a small theatrical troupe to perform scenes from The Peony Pavilion in their garden amidst the scent of ginger, green tea and jasmine. Peony's mother is against the production: "Unmarried girls should not be seen in public." But Peony's father prevails, assuring his wife that proprieties will be maintained. Women will watch the opera from behind a screen to hide them from view. Yet through a crack, Peony catches sight of an elegant, handsome man with hair as black as a cave and is immediately bewitched by him.So begins Peony's unforgettable journey of love, desire, sorrow and redemption. Lisa See's compelling new novel takes readers back to seventeenth-century
China and into the heart and soul of an unforgettable heroine."

I am fascinated by stories about
China and Lisa See's book provides an enchanting journey through ancient China with thoughtful, loving women the reader will not easily forget. The story offers glimpses into Chinese traditions and superstitions about how the dead and ancestors are treated.

(SPOILERS) At first I thought this was going to be a strange kind of love story. Then WOW.... Peony dies! She ends up wandering the earth as a hungry ghost. She learned the lessons of life that she couldn't have possibly learned in her short life on earth.

A heartbreaking beautiful love story with richly crafted characters. This audio book is
highly recommended.

RATING - 4.5/5 - COMPLETED - 5/9/09



  1. I'm so glad to see an audio review this morning! I'm almost done with The Help (one of the best audiobooks, EVER)and have been browsing audible to find another - will give this a test listen.

    Glad to hear your reading slump is ending!

  2. I haven't read this one yet, but I'm glad to see you really enjoyed it.

  3. This is one of the books I have in my TBR room waiting its turn. I gave my mother a copy for mother's day last year and she really liked it. I loved Snow Flower and the Secret Fan when I read it. Like you, I am really interested in China's history and many cultures.

  4. I've heard great things about Lisa See's books. I have a review copy of Shanghai Girls, and I plan to eventually check out her other books. Glad to hear you're working your way out of your slump!

    Diary of an Eccentric

  5. I loved this book and I also listened to the unabridged audio of it. I couldn't stop listening. No review, because I listened in my pre-blogging days.

  6. I also enjoy books set in China especially when they tell the story of women's lives. I haven't read this one, but I have it in my pile. I read Snow Flower and the Secret Fan a couple of times. If you haven't read that one, I highly recommend it. I think it was her first book.

  7. I am also reading Shanghai Girls now and really am liking it! Peony in Love is one I've had on the shelf for too long - glad to know you enjoyed it!

  8. I also really liked this. :D

    And yes, right now I'm reading Little Bee, and the writing is gorgeous. Didn't you notice it felt like a woman was writing it? I mean, the author really captured the woman's voice.

    I'm excited to read the Ogawa!


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