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The Jade Lily - Kirsty Manning

Paperback

Published: 24th April 2018
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Published: 24th April 2018
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The Jade Lily is a sweeping story of friendship, loyalty, love and identity from the popular author of The Midsummer Garden.

In 2016, fleeing London with a broken heart, Alexandra returns to Australia to be with her grandparents, Romy and Wilhelm, when her grandfather is dying. With only weeks left together, her grandparents begin to reveal the family mysteries they have kept secret for more than half a century.

In 1939, two young girls meet in Shanghai, the 'Paris of the East': beautiful local Li and Viennese refugee Romy form a fierce friendship. But the deepening shadows of World War Two fall over the women as Li and Romy slip between the city's glamorous French Concession and the desperate Shanghai Ghetto. Eventually, they are forced separate ways as Romy doubts Li's loyalties.

After Wilhelm dies, Alexandra flies to Shanghai, determined to trace her grandparents' past. As she peels back the layers of their hidden lives, she begins to question everything she knows about her family - and herself.

A gorgeously told tale of female friendship, the price of love, and the power of hardship and courage to shape us all.

About the Author

Kirsty Manning grew up in northern New South Wales. A country girl with wanderlust, her travels and studies have taken her through most of Europe, the east and west coasts of the United States and pockets of Asia.

Kirsty's first novel was the enchanting The Midsummer Garden published in 2017. The Jade Lily, compelling and pacey, is her second book.

Kirsty is a partner in the award-winning Melbourne wine bar Bellota, and the Prince Wine Store in Sydney and Melbourne. She lives with her husband and three children amid an old chestnut grove in the Macedon Ranges, Victoria.

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enthralling historical fiction

4

The Jade Lily is the second novel by Australian author, Kirsty Manning. Alexandra Laird had rushed home from London to be with her grandparents in Melbourne. Opa was dying, and she needed to be with him in his last hours, and to be there for Oma. Her husband's imminent death brought to mind all the memories that Romy Cohen (nee Bernfeld) had been suppressing. Shanghai, and their years there as Jewish refugees loomed large in her thoughts. Once Wilhelm has passed, and the proper Jewish mourning rites observed, Romy urges Alexandra to go back to work. Her job as a commodities trader gives her the opportunity to transfer to Shanghai, and she hopes she can use her free time to track down her mother's family. Alexandra had already known as a young orphan that her mother, Sophia Shu was Chinese, and had been brought to Australia by Romy. Now, with their grief still raw, is hardly the time to ask her Oma about it, so Alexandra makes her own enquiries. And tries not to get too distracted by Zhang, the charming garden designer sharing her building. Manning tells her story using a split narrative: Romy's story begins with her family's escape from Vienna; Alexandra's narrative is set in 2016. These are supplemented with letters and diary entries. Manning's characters are multi-faceted and, mostly, appealing, although sometimes their behavior is disappointing or puzzling. Certainly, the most charming character of all is the city of Shanghai itself. Manning's evocative descriptions will fill the reader's imagination with the sights, sounds and smells of the place, the food and the people. The depth of Manning's research is apparent on every page, and she kindly lists some resources for those readers who are bound to want to know more about the Jewish refugees accepted by Shanghai during World War Two, about the Japanese occupation, and about Traditional Chinese Medicine. She captures the era well, and the mystery of Sophia's origins will keep readers captivated, even if t

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Kirsty Manning

Kirsty Manning grew up in northern New South Wales. She has degrees in literature and communications and worked as an editor and publishing manager in book publishing for over a decade. A country girl with wanderlust, her travels and studies have taken her through most of Europe, the east and west coasts of the United States and pockets of Asia. Kirsty’s journalism and photography specialising in lifestyle and travel regularly appear in magazines, newspapers and online.

In 2005, Kirsty and her husband, with two toddlers and a baby in tow, built a house in an old chestnut grove in the Macedon Ranges. Together, they planted an orchard and veggie patch, created large herbal ‘walks’ brimming with sage and rosemary, wove borders from chestnuts branches and constructed far too many stone walls by hand.

Kirsty loves cooking with her kids and has several large heirloom copper pots that do not fit anywhere easily, but are perfect for making (and occasionally burning) jams, chutneys and soups.

With husband Alex Wilcox, Kirsty is a partner in the award-winning Melbourne wine bar Bellota, and the Prince Wine Store in Sydney and Melbourne.

Visit Kirsty Manning's Booktopia Author Page


ISBN: 9781760294793
ISBN-10: 1760294799
Audience: General
Format: Paperback
Language: English
Number Of Pages: 300
Published: 24th April 2018
Publisher: Allen & Unwin
Country of Publication: AU
Dimensions (cm): 23.4 x 15.3