Thousand Pieces of Gold: A Biographical Novel

Overview

A reissue of the classic biographical novel that has sold more than 200,000 copies

Lalu Nathoy’s father calls his thirteen-year-old daughter his treasure, his “thousand pieces of gold,” yet when famine strikes northern China in 1871, he is forced to sell her. She is sold first to a brothel, then to a slave merchant bound for America. In a new country, she is given the name Polly and eventually auctioned to a saloonkeeper. When admirer Charlie Bemis wins her in a poker game, he ...

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Overview

A reissue of the classic biographical novel that has sold more than 200,000 copies

Lalu Nathoy’s father calls his thirteen-year-old daughter his treasure, his “thousand pieces of gold,” yet when famine strikes northern China in 1871, he is forced to sell her. She is sold first to a brothel, then to a slave merchant bound for America. In a new country, she is given the name Polly and eventually auctioned to a saloonkeeper. When admirer Charlie Bemis wins her in a poker game, he frees her from her enslavement and eventually proposes marriage. The two live out their days on a bountiful farm, a homestead called Polly’s Place in Salmon Canyon, Idaho.

This masterfully told biographical novel is the true story of an extraordinary woman’s successful fight for independence and respect in the early American West.

“Lalu comes to life and transfixes the reader with her story of struggle and survival . . . Lalu/Polly was a remarkable pioneer woman—a new heroine of the American West—and we can thank McCunn for bringing her to life in such a moving and inspirational way.” —Jeanne Wakatsuki Houston, San Francisco Chronicle

“A valuable book that gives Chinese Americans another true heroine.” —Maxine Hong Kingston

“Lalu Nathoy’s courageous journey is an important contribution to the history of pioneer women.” —Ms. Magazine

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
[A] story of struggle and survival as a woman-and slave-in China and the American West . . . Fast-paced and entertaining-packed with adventure, drama, and inspiration. --Jeanne Wakatsuki Houston, San Francisco Chronicle

"From Shanghai to San Francisco, Lalu Nathoy's courageous journey is an important contribution to the history of pioneer women."--Ms. Magazine

"This biographical novel has plenty of suspense and a strong story line. Reading it is a liberal education in one phase of pioneer life in the West."--Lucille McDonald, Seattle Times

"A valuable book that gives Chinese Americans another true heroine."--Maxine Hong Kingston

"Ruthanne Lum McCunn has woven an enthralling work of fiction from the true-life story of Lalu Nathoy."--Elena Brunet, Los Angeles Times

Elena Brunet
Ruthanne Lum McCunn has woven an enthralling work of fiction from the true-life story of Lalu Nathoy.
— Elena Brunet,Los Angeles Times
Anne Alexander
Lalu is a living, vital person from page one until her death…[She] emerges as a person of dignity, intelligence, devotion, even humor. Author McCunn has given me a friend I'll never forget.
— Anne Alexander,Peninsula Times Tribune
Jeanne Wakatsuki Houston
[A] story of struggle and survival as a woman-and slave-in China and the American West…Fast-paced and entertaining-packed with adventure, drama, and inspiration.
— Jeanne Wakatsuki Houston,San Francisco Chronicle
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780807083819
  • Publisher: Beacon
  • Publication date: 8/28/2004
  • Series: Bluestreak Series
  • Edition description: None
  • Pages: 349
  • Sales rank: 333,655
  • Product dimensions: 5.40 (w) x 8.00 (h) x 0.86 (d)

Meet the Author

Ruthanne Lum McCunn was born in Hong Kong and has published seven books on the experiences of Chinese people in America; more than 275,000 copies of her books are in print.

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Sort by: Showing all of 6 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted October 30, 2009

    fan

    I really liked this book, I had to read it for school and ended up really enjoying it. It only took me about 5 days to finish it, I had a hard time putting it down.

    enjoy!

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  • Anonymous

    Posted November 14, 2007

    Great Story

    A heart warming story about a young girl's journey through a life of adversity. An easy and quick read.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted March 7, 2009

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    Posted June 5, 2009

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    Posted October 30, 2008

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    Posted November 21, 2009

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