MY GOODREADS REVIEW ~ LINK: https://www.goodreads.com/review/show/1186099332?book_show_action=false
THE GHOST BRIDE is Yangsze Choo’s debut Novel. Published on August 6, 2013.
It was an amazing read! (｡♥‿♥｡)
If you enjoy the supernatural, murder mystery and Chinese folklore your in for a treat. What first attracted me to this Novel was not the story hook but the cover art. It displays a beautiful oriental girl on her side (appearing to be asleep) while she is surrounded by reddish flowers and moonlight stars which I can only guess to mean the mystical aspect of the afterlife; that is part of the story’s theme.
Li Lan is the main character of the story. The author really did a good job bringing this character to life, I did feel instantly connected to her as she learns to discover herself and her place in Malaya set in the year 1893. In this time women did not have many rights and getting off and married was the norm and expected.
“I had few marriage prospects, and would be doomed to the half-life of spinsterhood. Without a husband, I would sink further into genteel poverty, bereft of even the comfort and respect of being a mother. Faced with these depressing thoughts, I buried my face in my thin cotton pillow and cried myself to sleep.” (page 24) THE GHOST BRIDE, Choo.
Li Lan’s narration really brings the reader into her world, filled with tradition, and a gimps into the afterlife. The story really is about the books title “The Ghost Bride”. A dead suitor haunts her dreams and his family try to have her marry him to become his Ghost Bride. If that wasn’t enought to get you interested there are many more adventures Li Lan brings you to, with another love interest Tian Bai whom is alive and many more complicated family affairs that do lead to murder.
My favorite parts are of her in the afterlife and the story-line with her spirit horse. These chapters really enlighten the reader into the magical world of Chines folklore and the world of the dead. The book reads well and the language is beautifully written. The author even provides you with notes on Malay spelling and meanings. The story may be fictional but the facts are historically true which makes this book a treasure.
My only complaint was the last chapter. It was written too quickly and although the story does conclude well it does not do justice to the beginning and middle of the book which provides the reader with dept and story. I am not sure what Choo’s strategy was to writing the last chapter like a summary rather than a story’s ending, but it does not make it unworthy of it’s charm and entertainment.
I highly recommend this read to anymore who enjoys an intriguing supernatural tale.
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Stephanie Lise Groulx
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