Chinese Cinderella (Puffin Modern Classics)

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9780141325675: Chinese Cinderella (Puffin Modern Classics)

Jung-ling's family considers her bad luck because her mother died giving birth to her. They discriminate against her and make her feel unwanted yet she yearns and continuously strives for her parents' love. Her stepmother is vindictive and cruel and her father dismissive. Jung-ling grows up to be an academic child, with a natural ability for writing. Only her aunt and grandfather offer her any love and kindness. The story is of survival in the light of the mental and physical cruelty of her stepmother and the disloyalty of her siblings. Jung-ling blossoms in spite of everything and the story ends as her father agrees to let her study in England.

A Puffin Modern Classic edition of this bestselling autobiography, celebrating ten years of publication.

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Review:

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

About the Author:

Adeline Yen Mah lives in California after growing up in Tianjin and Shanghai in China, Hong Kong and England. She studied medicine but gave up her career as a physician to become a full-time writer. After the death of her stepmother, she felt compelled to write her story and the result, Falling Leaves became an international bestseller. Adeline has written several other books for adults and children including Chinese Cinderella and the Secret Dragon Society, an adventure based on her own made-up stories when she was a lonely child.

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