Genre: Historical Fiction
Additional: Apparently I got approval for this on Netgalley but it was archived before I could download it. 😦
Synopsis: Jade Moon is a Fire Horse — the worst sign in the Chinese zodiac for girls, said to make them stubborn, willful, and far too imaginative. But while her family despairs of marrying her off, she has a passionate heart and powerful dreams, and wants only to find a way to make them come true.
Then a young man named Sterling Promise comes to their village to offer Jade Moon and her father a chance to go to America. While Sterling Promise’s smooth manners couldn’t be more different from her own impulsive nature, Jade Moon falls in love with him on the long voyage. But America in 1923 doesn’t want to admit many Chinese, and when they are detained at Angel Island, the “Ellis Island of the West,” she discovers a betrayal that destroys all her dreams. To get into America, much less survive there, Jade Moon will have to use all her stubbornness and will to break a new path . . . one as brave and dangerous as only a Fire Horse girl can imagine.
200words (or less) review: If I could get away with just saying: READ IT! on this review I really would because I absolutely adored The Fire Horse Girl. Definitely my favourite book of 2013 so far.
It had everything I wanted; inspiring protagonist, amazing storytelling, vivid scenery and it was wrapped up in the nice packaging of really good writing by Kay Honeyman.
Let me start with Jade Moon, born under the worst sign (for a girl) of the Chinese Zodiac she is cursed in the eyes of her village. Her mother died shortly after she was born and with the exception of Nushi, who despite being a servant actually ranks higher in the household hierarchy then Jade Moon, no one really cares about her.
Unlike her father Jade Moon is desperate to come to America, convinced she’ll have a chance to be herself there. I know it’s historically correct but the complete lack of value for women in this story makes for very frustrating reading at times. Yet at the same time it makes Jade Moon as a character that much more amazing.
My only complaint about The Fire Horse Girl, it ended and I could have carried on reading for a long long time.