About The Paper Daughters of Chinatown

the paper daughters of chinatown

When twenty-six-year-old Donaldina Cameron arrives at the Occidental Mission Home for Girls in 1895, she intends to stay for only one year to teach sewing skills to young Chinese women. Within days, she discovers that the job is much more complicated than perfect stitches and even hems. San Francisco has a dark side, one where a powerful underground organization—the criminal tong—buys and sells Chinese girls like common goods. With the help of Chinese interpreters and a local police squad, Donaldina works night and day to stop the abominable slave and prostitution trade.

Mei Lien believes she is sailing to the “Gold Mountain” in America to become the wife of a rich Chinese man. Instead she finds herself sold into prostitution—beaten, starved, and forced into an opium addiction. It is only after a narrow escape that she hears of the mission home and dares to think there might be hope for a new life.

The Paper Daughters of Chinatown throws new light on the age-old scourge of human trafficking. The heroes who fought this evil and the victims who triumphed over it more than a hundred years ago offer a bright example of courage and determination for anyone wishing for a better world.

My review

I’ve been excited to get to read this book since I heard about it. Heather B Moore is one of my very favorite authors. She has such a way with words. And her historical fiction is fabulous.

This book touched me in a way that I haven’t been touched by a book in a long time. There were so many parallels with what happened to Donaldina, aka Dolly, Cameron in the early 1900’s to now. There was a plague that they had to quarantine from for a while, terrible things happened to good people, and there was an earthquake as well. But through it all, Dolly was a force for good.

I really loved Dolly. She was an actual person. She really did live in San Francisco and care for the Chinese young women who had been so hurt. Some of their stories are shared in this book. And they are heart-wrenching. It’s so hard to believe that someone can do these kinds of things to another person. But they did. And they actually still do in our times.

That’s one thing I want to take away from this one. I want to be one who is willing to stand up for what’s right. And help others who are in a hard situation if I can. Thanks to Heather B Moore for writing this book. I’m sure it wasn’t easy, but it’s so needed.

I was sent a copy of The Paper Daughters of Chinatown as a gift from the publisher. All opinions are my own.

Purchase links

AmazonDeseret Book

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