Peony: A Novel of China

Peony: A Novel of China

by Pearl S. Buck
4.1 17

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Overview

Peony: A Novel of China by Pearl S. Buck

A young Chinese woman falls in love with a Jewish man in nineteenth-century China in this evocative novel by the Nobel Prize–winning author of The Good Earth.

In 1850s China, a young girl, Peony, is sold to work as a bondmaid for a rich Jewish family in Kaifeng. Jews have lived for centuries in this region of the country, but by the mid-nineteenth century, assimilation has begun taking its toll on their small enclave. When Peony and the family’s son, David, grow up and fall in love with one another, they face strong opposition from every side. Tradition forbids the marriage, and the family already has a rabbi’s daughter in mind for David. Long celebrated for its subtle and even-handed treatment of colliding traditions, Peony is an engaging coming-of-age story about love, identity, and the tragedy and beauty found at the intersection of two disparate cultures.   This ebook features an illustrated biography of Pearl S. Buck including rare images from the author’s estate.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781453263532
Publisher: Open Road Media
Publication date: 08/21/2012
Sold by: Barnes & Noble
Format: NOOK Book
Pages: 339
Sales rank: 58,482
File size: 14 MB
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About the Author

Pearl S. Buck (1892–1973) was a bestselling and Nobel Prize–winning author. Her classic novel The Good Earth (1931) was awarded a Pulitzer Prize and William Dean Howells Medal. Born in Hillsboro, West Virginia, Buck was the daughter of missionaries and spent much of the first half of her life in China, where many of her books are set. In 1934, civil unrest in China forced Buck back to the United States. Throughout her life she worked in support of civil and women’s rights, and established Welcome House, the first international, interracial adoption agency. In addition to her highly acclaimed novels, Buck wrote two memoirs and biographies of both of her parents. For her body of work, Buck received the Nobel Prize for Literature in 1938, the first American woman to have done so. She died in Vermont. 
Pearl S. Buck (1892–1973) was a bestselling and Nobel Prize–winning author. Her classic novel The Good Earth (1931) was awarded a Pulitzer Prize and William Dean Howells Medal. Born in Hillsboro, West Virginia, Buck was the daughter of missionaries and spent much of the first half of her life in China, where many of her books are set. In 1934, civil unrest in China forced Buck back to the United States. Throughout her life she worked in support of civil and women’s rights, and established Welcome House, the first international, interracial adoption agency. In addition to her highly acclaimed novels, Buck wrote two memoirs and biographies of both of her parents. For her body of work, Buck received the Nobel Prize for Literature in 1938, the first American woman to have done so. She died in Vermont. 

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Peony: A Novel of China 4.1 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 17 reviews.
LaughingMagpie More than 1 year ago
If you enjoy reading Lisa See and Amy Tan novels, then consider reading this one. Worth reading at least once. I found it entertaining and the story's centering around the Jews living in China was refreshing.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Buck writes simply and clearly. As a historical novel Peony is weak because it isnt set in just one period. The background events actually cover more than the lifetime of one person. Also, Buck's knowledge of Judaism is weak so she has the Jewish characters talking about Jehovah (Jews traditionally do not name their God, but speak of him as The Lord, or G-d. However if they were to use a name it would not be Jehovah.) and comfortable with consuming food made from blood though they avoid pork. It is unlikely that the prohibition against consuming blood would fade sooner than the prohibition against pork. However, if you aren't looking for historical or cultural accuracy/plausibility, it is a good read. Bucks novels are still exotic, and the characters are vivid even when stereotypes.
Bandit29 More than 1 year ago
Until I read this novel, I was unaware of the community of Jews in China. It showed the people of China to be far more accepting of differences in religion and culture than many other societies. The story of David and Peony ties the lives of these different cultures together.
onadvidreader More than 1 year ago
I forgot what a great writer she was. Enjoyed the story with its historical facts.
TalleyRoss More than 1 year ago
If someone had described this book to me for what it really is, I probably would have never picked it up. I was sucked in by the back cover, promising me a romance between the son of a well respected family and a bond servant. Peony was so much more than that. It is true that part of the story is about Peony, the little bond servant, and her young master, David. But another part of the story is about China. And another part about the persecution and destruction of Jews throughout the world. It is about tradition and fitting in. It is about the value of personal beliefs and culture. It is a story about the importance of generations, both past, present, and future. Written in 1948, this novel would not be a page turner, and yet it kept my interest and had me thinking about it throughout my day. It doesn't have all the trappings of modern literature. There is no catchy opening line. Nothing sensational happens in the first page or even the first chapter. Instead it is the story of a family caught between the country they live in and the the belief system that is strange and misunderstood by their neighbors. The writing is style is subtle, but still evokes deep interest in the characters and the trials they face. There are surprising moments and moments so full of true and lasting love that they will bring a tear to your eye. This is the kind of book you pick up for a book club, because there is so much about life portrayed in the novel that it could lead to hours of discussion. Well done. 4.5
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Usually I go directly to mystery but thought I would take a break. So glad I did.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Really enjoyed this book. Learned many ancient customs that I wasn't aware of.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
OKP More than 1 year ago
Love it.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
read several of her other books and was looking forward to reading this bood. Was very disappointing. I kept reading this book thinking it was going to get better and when I finally finished it I thought to myself what a wasted read.
PC-Fan More than 1 year ago
This book told a story that was had great depth and insight into the characters of both the Jews and the Chinese. Enjoyed this book very much.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Kaylee took my nook.)) "Hey."
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
My name is silverwave.im a silver looking tom with white stripes and emerald green eyes and very handsome.creative smart and unselfish.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
(It phoenix) Sits at the clan edge being sure to remain in the bushes. Sniffs at the clan smelling of fish and mice. Her stomach growled at the scent. She stared at her ribs. <p> "Quiet; they might hear you!" She said recalling the last time she was discovered. "Ok, but shush!" <p> She looked around. An old dead mouse layed near. "Yuck! Crowfood, looks like no warrior feast today!" She growled swallowing the dirty meal. <p> She licked at a new wound, a cut from her last discovery. "Fox-brains." She cursed at them. She stayed low. This camp was nothing like the hole she had made her den in! "I wish i had a clan..." she said recalling her selfsupporting life. "Maye i could watch and some warriors might fight! I could learn to hunt and have a real meal!" She squealed with glee. If she were in a clan she would have been made an apprentice a whole moon ago! But being abandon at three moons had left her in the dust. She sat watching. ~Starving Wolfkit
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Yes you may! P.s. can one of you go on warrior 1 resolt im lockt out of all 3 but the one i posted at im not lockt out of and one of you please welcome any one exept killers if thar are killers report to scd please becus im going to my grandmothers house for a few days starting today so every weekend silverwind ( sorry if i miss spelled it ) will take over for me. XOXPeonixstarXOX