From the moment I picked up The Red Chamber, I couldn’t put it down. Poor little country girl Daiyu is sent to her well-off relatives in the Capital after the death of the her mother. It is set in early 18th century China. What Daiyu finds in the women’s quarters of noble Jia family, is a soap opera of political intrigue, romance and unlikely alliances.
Author Pauline Chen based this novel on a famous work of Chinese literature – The Dream of the Red Chamber by Cao Xuequin. She condensed it down, and focused on three main characters to tell the story of downfall of the Jia family.
I absolutely loved it and am eager to watch one of the film adaptations of the original work. With the exception of a few anachronisms, I couldn’t find much to fault in this enjoyable and touching novel.
4 1/2 stars (out of 5)
Published in 2012
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