This was my first Lisa See book and I read it because my church book club is about it read it. I like to keep up with what they are reading if I have not had a chance to read it and this one looked pretty interesting. I will say it was a great read, but I was also reading The Leavers at the same time which had a similar theme, but was slightly better.
The book begins in the 1980s with Li-yan who, along with her family, pick tea. Their entire village relies on this tea as a source of income. They are also still wrapped up in traditions, such as the one child tradition or that twins are curses or if you hit the gate you can be cursed.
For Li-yan, her fate begins by taking a bite of a pancake that she should not eat. This simple act begins a series of events that will get her together with the wrong man, who will impregnate her. This child she will have to abandon and her child will be adopted in the States.
We will follow Li-yan for most of the book with small interludes about her daughter. Li-yan will have a life filled with some challenges and some great luck. Tea will play a major part of her life and will connect her and her daughter.
The book is well written and enjoyable. I found it moved pretty quickly for the length that it was. I found the story quite enjoyable even through the difficulties of the characters. The only problem was as soon as we hit the last section, it becomes a bit telegraphed.
I will write that I kept having to remind myself this was taking place in the 1980s and the 1990s and not the 1880s or 1890s. There are some pretty disturbing scenes and practices that seemed out of date for the timeline, but See knows the history well, so I don't doubt her. I will warn there are some murdering of babies scenes. Yes, scenes.
I gave this one about a 3.5 stars.
Here is your Amazon link- The Tea Girl of Hummingbird Lane by Lisa See