In Wayson Choy’s The Jade Peony, we are greeted with the story of growing up in Vancouver’s Chinatown during World War II. This is the first book that made me feel that as an Asian-Canadian, I too had a voice and a story to tell. Told from the perspectives of three siblings, each section reveals the complexities and layers of what it can mean to be an Asian-Canadian during wartime. Issues that are depicted include immigration, cultural identity and being torn between two distinct and different worlds, a subtle story line about being gay, and of course, racism.
Beautifully written with a gentle hand, The Jade Peony is a soft spoken book that has oh so much to say.
Other recommended works by Wayson Choy: All That Matters, Not Yet, Paper Shadows