Blue Dress Girl
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When a Chinese peasant girl is chosen as a concubine to Li Hung, Chief Customs Officer for the bustling port of Canton, her parents tell her it is a great honor—but the seedy reality is far from honorable. After an incident with a lecherous British trader she is sent away and is injured during the voyage when a British man-o'-war fires at the junk in which she is traveling. Second Lieutenant Kernow Keats, a Royal Marine from the man-o'-war, boards the junk and, moved by the plight of the fragile young girl, makes arrangements to take her to a mission hospital in Hong Kong where their romance blossoms. However, a love affair between a British officer and a Chinese peasant girl is unthinkable in 1857, and when Kernow becomes inextricably involved in the vicious war being waged by the Chinese Taiping rebels it seems their love is doomed. From the author of Chase the Wind and Though the Heavens May Fall this beautifully told saga is majestically woven around the lives of two people, discovering unexpected feelings in unfamiliar territory.
- Robert Hale, August 2012
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