Chinese Cinderella: The Secret Story of an Unwanted Daughter Paperback – 2 Sep 1999
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Adeline Yen Mah first told her story in the emotive, bestselling Falling Leaves, an adult autobiography which charted her passage from childhood through to womanhood. Here in Chinese Cinderella she relates her tale for younger readers, detailing her difficult life as an unwanted and deeply misunderstood child.
Christened with the Chinese name Jun-ling, her mother died just a few days after her birth, and from that moment her fate within her family was sealed. As one of seven siblings, including two children from her father's second marriage, Jun-ling struggled to maintain her dignity from a young age, treated as she was with a vicious contempt by all around her at home, apart from her beloved Aunt Baba and her elderly grandfather.
Growing up as she did in a relatively wealthy Chinese family in the 40s and 50s, the privileges that money would normally give such a child passed her by, and even her intelligence which shone through as early as kindergarten could not save her from the emotional brutality of a family who simply did not love her.
Jun-ling¹s story, written from the very heart of the successful adult she has become, is a stinging and hostile tale of a child whose young life was blighted by lack of care and affection and is an emotional roller coaster journey which, without actually falling into the trap of melodrama, will wring tears of rage, sadness and deep, deep frustration from any reader. (Age 10 and over) --Susan Harrison
"This memoir is hard to put down." -- "Publishers Weekly", Starred
"From the Paperback edition."
"This memoir is hard to put down." -- "Publishers Weekly," Starred
"From the Paperback edition." --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.See all Product Description
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Top Customer Reviews
The book is simple, which is one of the reasons that it touches your heart. It will appeal to all ages, and is an ideal present, even if you don't read much.
This book is a true account of Adeline Yen Mah’s childhood. When Adeline’s mother dies giving birth to her, the family consider Adeline bad luck. The only people that did not think that she was inferior were her Aunt Baba and her grandfather who helped her overcome her awful childhood.
The book starts off when Adeline is four and how her three older brothers and one older sister, tormented her. These matters were not helped when Adeline came top of her class for a whole term in a row. Adeline’s father re-marries and her stepmother abuses her. Adeline’s stepmother has two children and it is clear that she favours them over the rest of the children.
When Adeline grows up, she becomes extremely clever and very popular. Adeline, against her parents’ orders, goes to her best friends birthday party. As a result of this, she is sent to boarding school. While she is at boarding school her grandfather dies, a tragic moment in her life. Then the turning point for Adeline is when she enters a writing competition and wins first prize. Her father is impressed and grants Adeline’s wish, to go and study at university in England.
I relished reading this book because it was moving, and full of drama and suspense. The author tells the story in the first person. My favourite scene was when Adeline won the writing competition because the chances were not in her favour. My favourite character was Aunt Baba because she was persistent in helping Adeline whatever the circumstances.
By: Najah Alam, age 11
Most Recent Customer Reviews
I love this book. I first read this book when I turned 12 years old and it was the first book that I cried whilst reading, followed by a mix of emotions. Read morePublished 2 months ago by Sophia
Great book. Read it when I was at secondary school and I'll keep it foreverPublished 3 months ago by Steph. Andrews
The book arrived in great condition, although it was just slightly worn. The story itself however was too immature for my preference.Published 5 months ago by Bethany Clarke
Bought for daughter
She loved it and wants to read More from the same author
I cried throughout yet wasn't able to put it down. Written in the words of an innocent child it batters your heartPublished 8 months ago by Amazon Customer
This is the story of Adeline Jen Mah’s unhappy childhood in China. As the title suggests, it was not a happy childhood. Read morePublished 11 months ago by History Geek
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