16 August, 2013

Book Club Friday: Adeline Yen Mah's Falling Leaves

Being surrounded by Chinese folks, working in a company owned by a Chinese, and spending a great deal of time with a lot of Chinese friends have made me fascinated with their culture. It’s been going on for a while and it's opened me to a totally different world. This might be the reason why the moment I laid eyes on the cover of this book by Adeline Yen Mah and read the title, Falling Leaves – The Memoir of an Unwanted Chinese Daughter, I immediately picked it up and was determined to finish it in one day ... which I did, teehee!
"You have your whole life ahead of you. Be smart. Study hard and be independent. I'm afraid
the chances of your getting a dowry are slim. You must rely on yourself. No matter what else people
may steal from you, they will never be able to take away your knowledge. The world is changing.
You must make your own life outside this home"

In a nutshell: Family. Struggle. Hope. 

I thought the book was outstanding. I admire Adeline Yen Mah for sharing her family’s story considering how conservative most Chinese families are. Falling Leaves brought me to different years in China and other countries. Reading about World War I, different revolutions, China when it used to be a young republic, and domestic affairs of an affluent Chinese family from the point-of-view of an intelligent, brave, young girl are riveting. Many of the periods the book touched on—I’ve seen them in several movies and the closest would be The Last Emperor.

Falling Leaves is a true story based on Adeline Yen Mah's life. It is heartbreaking, but at the same time empowering. Not only does one get to look back into history, but one also learns much about life and family from the story of a young woman who was never hateful and never gave up despite the odds and whatever bad times life threw at her. The journey was arduous yet still lovely.

Adeline found support and refuge in her Aunt Baba, who is such an admirable woman. Aunt Baba shows that love still proves to be very powerful. It draws forth strength at our weakest moments. It gives light at the darkest hours. Love brings hope and warms a heart full of sorrow. At the end of the day, every person just wants to love and be loved, accepted in our own social circles. Sometimes, we forgive those who have hurt especially if they’re our closest friends and family, because we still want them in our lives but it doesn’t mean that we should trust them again.

Adeline Yen Mah and I bonded at, “Don't trust anyone. Be a cold fish. I hurt no one. And no one can hurt me."

I'm giving Falling Leaves - ★ ★ ★ ★ ☆

My last Book Club Friday post was John Green's The Fault In Our Stars.
Do you have something for Book Club Friday? Visit the link to share your latest reads. ☮..Peace + ❥_Love + Good Vibes.__RUSS.


Ben-Ariel said...


jassy said...

hey russ you're back to blogging! nice :) keep on writing! and who knows maybe i'll be inspired by your healthy habits and i will finally start living healthy again :)