From the bestselling author of Yellow Crocus comes a heart-wrenching story about finding strength in a new world.
Southern China, 1923. Desperate to secure her future, Mei Ling’s parents arrange a marriage to a widower in California. To enter the country, she must pretend to be her husband’s first wife—a paper wife.
On the perilous voyage, Mei Ling takes an orphan girl named Siew under her wwife.On ...more
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The novel begins in 1923 in China. Already, that has my interest as I love historical fiction books with the added bonus of life and traditions in China thrown in. I was hooked.
Mei Ling's sister was to become the "paper wife" of a widower with one small son (whom he has yet to meet) who will be living in California. When her sister becomes very ill jus ...more
Ibrahim delivers another solid read based on history with rich characters living in challenging times. I loved a earlier read. "Yellow Crocus" and now she has enriched her readers lives with "Paper Wife". I struggled with my rating because I would have liked to see her relationship with her husband to continue further but the ending was perfect and it was a satisfying finish.
Mei Ling's sister is set to marry a Chin ...more
I enjoyed getting to know the characters in this story. Some of them were more well-rounded than others, but I still enjoyed hearing their stories. A couple of questions were left open, so you don't know everything you want to about all of them, but you know them all well enough.
I would have given the story 5 stars except for a couple ...more
Mei Ling’s parents arrange a marriage to a widower in California. To enter the country, she must pretend to be her husband’s first wife—a paper wife. Set in early 1920's, California, Mei Ling is forced to protect her fragile marriage and her children by making decisions that will have a life long effect.
Easy read, good historical fiction story that would be appropriate for younger teens.
Although this story begins ninety years ago in 1923, there are many alarming similarities between the discrimination faced by immigrants during that time period and the discrimination faced by those who have chosen to emigrate to the United States in modern times.
Mei Ling was happily living out her young life in China when the ...more
I read & listened to ‘Paper Wife’ because I adore every book from Laila Ibrahim! Yet I couldn’t help but feel I was reading “Shanghai Girls” another author, yet about 10 hours less and less details. It was so close to the same story line, but different time..matchmaker involved in lives & the Chinese girl being sent to Angel Island in San Francisco to the same husband type..always say they have money but have none..and a pregnancy. The difference h ...more
I really enjoyed "Paper Wife." This novel provides such realistic, or what I think is realistic, insight and emotion into what it was like to be what is termed a "paper wife."
A paper wife, or paper son, daughter, etc., is someone who is essentially sold by their family to a husband, or another family. In this novel, you meet a young woman who is sold to be married. She does not meet her husband until she has just married him. They end up travelling from southern China to ...more
Eighteen year old Mei Ling and her sister Jah Jeh are living in a village with their family. It is 1923 and times are hard as China rebounds from famine, war and disease. A matchmaker has been employed and a husband has been found for Jah Jeh who is destined to travel to California with her merchant husband and his orphaned son Bo. Unfortunately she is stricken with a fever and Mei Ling must take her place as the matchmaker will not refund her fee. Such is the ...more
DNF- I can’t deal with how this author makes her historical characters have contemporary ideas, values, morals, and other traits. In this book, a rural country teen girl of Chinese descendent (brand new Communist China no less) emigrates to the USA in the early 1900s and her inner voice, her education, and her world views are comparable to a modern woman. Not buying the malarkey….
The concept is great & the s ...more
Don’t want to spoil this book for anyone, but if you come across to this book, definitely read it!
I am so confident that people would love this story!
Paper Wife was a fascinating novel, written by Laila Ibrahim. It takes place in China, and later, in the United States, during the early 1920’s, just as new foreign immigration laws are being passed. The premise was fascinating to me.
"From the bestselling author of Yellow Crocus comes a heart-wrenchinglife."Paper ...more
There is quite a bit of cultural/historical content, but the book still flows smoothly and rather quickly. I read way past my bedtime night after night because I was so engrossed in Mei Ling’s story. This was my first Laila Ibrahim book, but I seriously doubt it will be my la ...more
Loveable characters and a moving story. I liked it, but wished this similar immigrant story were told be as beautifully as Daughter Of Fortune by Allende. Will be watching this author to see how she matures as a writer.
The book started off with a bang, very intriguing and familiar to some other books just like it. Towards the middle, the main character got a bit overbearing with her worrisome thoughts. It became challenging to deal with.
However, the twist at the end saved the book for me. It was pleasantly unexpected.
This was a fascinating and beautiful read about a small part of American history that I knew nothing about.
Meh Ling is a 'Paper Wife' forced into a marriage to a Gam San Haak - a Chinese man who lives in California. He needs a new wife to replace the one who died, leaving behind a small child. Meh Ling will lose her family, her country and her name to this new life but she has no choice, to refuse will ...more
For me, this book had great potential, but it just didn't make it for me to give a 4 or 5 star. Maybe a 3.5. "Paper Wife" is a lovely novel that shows a unique perspective of life for Chinese immigrants coming to America in the 1920's. Historically, I did find most of it interesting and at times - unsettling. Southern China, 1923. Desperate to secure her future, Mei Ling’s parents arrange a marriage to a widower in California. To enter the country, she must pretend to be her husband’s first wife ...more
I was the founder and director of Woolsey Children's School where I had first hand experience loving children that were not my own. There are scenes in Yel ...more