This new novel by the author Lisa See, “Dreams of joy” represents a continuation of the story about the sisters Pearl and May, protagonists from “Shanghai girls”, where the main role goes to the nineteen-year old Joy. When Joy reveals the long-kept secret about her origin that her biological mother is May, and not Pearl, then, Joy decides to embark on a journey to Communist China in order to track down her biological father, but also because she was attracted by the communist ideal of a righteous society.
Actually, “Shanghai girls” outlines the exciting and moving story of sisters Pearl and May. From the time they worked as models in the “Asian Paris” to the Japanese invasion and the starting of their new life in L.A. In the story “Dreams of Joy,” Pearl goes back to Shanghai after twenty years looking for Joy, who was inspired to go to China because of her idealistic ideas and yearning to find her biological father, the painter Z. G.
Joy and Z.G. are leaving to a Chinese province, where they start to participate in the Green dragon movement, which was incited by the Mao’s movement for the creation of folk commune called ‘Great Leap Forward’. But the dream of a communist paradise soon gets destroyed by the famine which was caused by the bizarre policy of the communist authorities. The 45 million deaths caused by the ‘Great Leap Forward’ speak for themselves, but Lisa See tries to retell this horrifying episode from Chinese history through this devastating story of human endurance, unconquered spirit and power of love between a mother and daughter. Click here to find out more about this novel.