I received the book as an advanced reader copy through Library Thing and had requested it because it looked like something I would enjoy.
A young British woman goes to Hong Kong with her new husband, who she doesn’t really care for, but uses as an excuse to escape her life. She is hired by a wealthy family to teach their daughter to play the piano and gets involved with an Englishmen with a mysterious past and links to a beautiful Eurasion socialite. The book goes between the early 1950s when Claire arrives and 1942, during the Korean invasion.
I think the characters were well written and intriguing, but I felt that I would have liked to know more about Claire and what she was feeling. I liked the style, even though the switching back and forth in time was irritating, some of the time and wish the story had stayed in one time period for longer periods of time.
The thing I liked the most about the book was the details about life in Hong Kong in the early 1950s.
I like the cover of the book and the way it combines the genteel looking Englishwoman with the Asian style flower motif along the bottom. The book is really about the clash of cultures, or the way that the Asian and the British cultures were merged, but yet separate in that time period in Hong Kong.
I would recommend it to people who enjoy reading historical novels set in Asia.