Becoming Madame Mao
Becoming Madame Mao recounts the experiences of a Chinese opera singer who sought to have great influence, and eventually rose to power in the ruling Communist government. This is a valuable behind-the-scenes look at the workings of the Communist party during the age of the Cultural Revolution. Madame Mao used her influence as the spouse of Chairman Mao to take care of business, both cultural and personal, in a ruthless and driving fashion that earned ... Empress Orchid
Houghton Mifflin, Feb 2004, 24.00, 336 pp.
In the middle of the nineteenth century, seventeen years old Orchid accompanies her aristocratic clan to Beijing to inter her deceased father. Meanwhile the Emperor Hsien Feng decrees that he seeks a wife who must have royal blood so that the offspring are purebred Manchu. Though related to the Manchus, her family faces poverty until Hsien surprisingly selects Orchid.
As her clan's ... Wild Ginger
Houghton Mifflin, Apr 2002, 23.00, 217 pp.
Shanghai during the Cultural Revolution of the late 1960s and early 1970s is a dangerous place as Chairman Mao and his devoted horde demand self-sacrifice for the good of the cause. Quiet and innocent Maple loses her father to the labor camps. Because the crimes of the parents are bestowed upon the children, his minor infraction leaves Maple open to “umbrella” beatings by Maoist mo...