Sunday, October 05, 2014

Falling Leaves Return to Their Roots

  • Paperback cover: 278 pages
  • Publisher: Penguin Group (1997)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN : 0-14-026598-8
  • Genre: Biography/Memoirs/Non-fiction
  • Days spent reading: 2 1/2

Her grand aunt formed the Shanghai Women's Bank. Her father was known as the miracle boy with the power of turning iron into gold. Yet in this affluent Chinese family the fifth child and youngest daughter, Adeline, suffered appalling emotional abuse. 

Set against the background of changing political times and the collision of East  and west, Falling leaves describes how, despite the legacy of her painful childhood, Adeline Yen Mah survived to make a successful career. Told with all the suspense and emotional force of a novel, this true story is moving in its eloquent simplicity and, through the dignity of its indomitable protagonist, finally uplifting. 

source: Goodreads

My Thoughts:

I'm always fascinated by ancient Chinese culture. I grew up watching Chinese martial arts and movies. My desire and curiosity is what led me to read books like this. It somehow developed a soft spot for books about China and it's people.

The first few pages is a bit of a drag and doesn't have enough intrigue to make me continue to read. Each chapter speaks of the cruelty the "unwanted" daughter suffers in the hand of her stepmother. The cry for love, attention, appreciation, and acceptance can be heard on each page.

I understand the ties that bind this family which is of great value in most Asian countries. For I also grew understanding that family comes first. What I didn't understand is the silence of people who were supposed to protect and care for Adeline and her siblings. The obvious discrimination was ignored by the elders and did nothing to stop it. It's as if their lives are in the hands of the cruel stepmother who lack love and piety.

In some instances or two I somehow can relate to what Adeline was feeling. We both found our comfort and escape in books when confronted with undesirable situations.

I was hoping for a fairy tale ending but, well, it almost had one.


Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...