Transport yourself to the delicious smells and strange noises of Shanghai in the late 1930s and 1940s where, along with many other Jewish refugees, Romy Cohen and her parents have landed after surviving Kristallnacht in Vienna. In 2016, Romy’s grand-daughter Alexandra, living in Melbourne in 2016, is offered a new job in Shanghai and realises that this provides an opportunity for her to unravel some of the mystery surrounding her birth. Extremely accurate historically through many visits and much research Kirsty Manning takes us back and forward between Shanghai and Melbourne, between Romy and Alexandra. She has done a superlative job of re-creating Shanghai and the Jewish Hongkew Ghetto as well as the showing the reader the impact of the Japanese presence in wartime. And along the way, you can learn about Chinese traditional medicine and the herbs and spices used in cooking and medical treatment.
Guest Review by Rita