Tent of Orange Mist

Tent of Orange Mist

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by Paul West
     
 

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In December 1937 the city of Nanking, China, falls to brutal Japanese invaders, and thus begins a compelling drama of widespread chaos and personal courage. Against a backdrop of burning buildings and random atrocities stands Scald Ibis, the teenage daughter of an eminent scholar, who must transform herself completely in order to survive. With her family gone, she is… See more details below

Overview

In December 1937 the city of Nanking, China, falls to brutal Japanese invaders, and thus begins a compelling drama of widespread chaos and personal courage. Against a backdrop of burning buildings and random atrocities stands Scald Ibis, the teenage daughter of an eminent scholar, who must transform herself completely in order to survive. With her family gone, she is forced to work as a prostitute in a bordello, changing slowly and painfully from a girl into a woman. Her fortunes improve when a Japanese warlord, Hayashi, takes a fancy to her; but her greatest challenge comes with the sudden appearance of her ailing father, whose inner demons threaten both of their lives.

Editorial Reviews

Library Journal
Set in China during the Japanese invasion of the mid-1930s, this new novel by West, a writer Vance Bourjaily once called "our finest living stylist in English," is both moving and intriguing. Moving because of the story: a 16-year-old girl, Scald Ibis, repeatedly violated by invaders and unaware that her mother has been defiled and her brother beheaded, is forced into prostitution to keep her scholar-father alive; her resourcefulness and the hope that sustains her add uncommon depth to her story. Intriguing because of the writing: fine writing, yes, but with interesting use of device, e.g., much of the narration is from Scald's viewpoint, but sometimes a very text-conscious narrator, questioning and anything but omniscient, emerges. An affecting novel by the author of Love's Mansion (LJ 9/1/92); highly recommended.-Robert E. Brown, Onondaga Cty. P.L., Syracuse, N.Y.

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780879517922
Publisher:
Overlook Press, The
Publication date:
09/28/1997
Pages:
272
Product dimensions:
5.46(w) x 8.00(h) x 0.77(d)

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