by Lensey Namioka
If you haven’t discovered Lensey Namioka, you’re in for a treat. I met her recently, and she has an intriguing background: daughter of a Chinese linguist, she married a mathematician from Japan after immigrating to the U.S. Her books, for children and young adults, draw on her deep knowledge of China and Japan. This novel tells the tale of Ailin, the spirited third sister in the Tao family, a girl who refuses to have her feet bound. That causes a break in her arranged marriage and costs her dearly; she loses her family connections as she gets an English education in Shanghai in the 1910s. To find out what happens next, you’ll have to read the book.