Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Habit of a Foreign Sky by Xu Xi

Habit of a Foreign Sky
by Xu Xi

Published: October 2010
Genre: Chinese, Coming of Age
Paperback: 288 pages
Rating: 5

Description from the amazon:
Somewhere between Hong Kong and New York, life does an abrupt shift for Gail Szeto, when her mother, her last family member, is killed in an accident.

For Gail, a mixed-race, single mother who had buried her young son less than two years prior, all she has left is a hard-won career at a global investment bank.

Life rapidly goes into free fall for this woman with a complicated past, who was once so sure of her direction in life, who can now see no clear future path.

Shortlisted for the inaugural Man Asian Literary Prize, this novel offers a an international cast of characters in New York, Hong Kong and Shanghai.

Quotes to note:
Entering her mother's room, she confronted the hoarding of a life.
- page 61, chapter 5

But families were complicated these days, neither happy nor unhappy, and as unpredictable and mercurial as human resources.
- page 251, chapter 26

My two-bits:
In-a-word(s): Fa-Loong
I call this a coming-of-age story although it is not YA. It is more like a coming-of-age during a later stage in life in which the protagonist undergoes major growth.

This tale kept me interested and curious to the very end.

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* review copy courtesy of PR by the Book

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