The Fat Man's Daughter

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Soho Press, 2005 - Fiction - 276 pages
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"Catches the sights, smells, sounds and tastes of Hong Kong, China and Manchuria in 1937 as they filter through the senses of a fascinating young woman. . . . Under the amazingly sure hand of Petit, an Australian writer of rare abilities, every aspect of this terrific story comes to life."- Chicago Tribune €œWith a dramatic sense of time and place, Caroline Petit has woven a story as intricate as embroidered Chinese silk. She blends a tragic period in Asian history with the extraordinary journey of Leah Kolbe, a compelling character who is perfect for Petit's late 1930s Hong Kong.€ -Jacqueline Winspear, author of Maisie Dobbs, Birds of a Feather, and Pardonable Lies Hong Kong, 1937: Orphaned by the sudden death of her father, a shady Hong Kong dealer in antiquities, 19-year-old Leah Kolbe finds she has been left penniless. Her only assets are the skills her father taught her: connoisseurship, secretiveness, and duplicity. She is approached by a Mr. Chang, who claims to have known her father and offers her a commission to go to Manchukuo (the Japanese puppet kingdom recently established in Manchuria) to smuggle out Chinese Imperial treasures. She consents and, accompanied by her faithful amahand a White Russian woman in Chang's pay, takes the train north. The trip is perilous, as is her return through besieged Nanking and by sampan across the South China Sea. But it is not until she reaches the empty house back in Hong Kong that Leah becomes her own €œcountry of one.€ From the Trade Paperback edition.

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User Review  - Jane Doe - Kirkus

An Orientalist's daughter goes to Japanese-occupied Manchuria to recoup her father's legacy, in a first novel from Australian author Petit.One sultry autumn day in 1937, the corpulent Theo Kolbe, a ... Read full review



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About the author (2005)

Caroline Petit was born in Washington, D.C., raised in Maryland and now lives in Victoria, Australia with her husband. A graduate of Chatham College, she holds advanced degrees from Johns Hopkins University, the London School of Economics, and the University of Melbourne's School of Law. She is the author of THE FAT MAN'S DAUGHTER.

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