Love and Other Consolation Prizes

Love and Other Consolation Prizes

A Novel

Book - 2017
Average Rating:
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A half-Chinese orphan whose mother sacrificed everything to give him a better chance is raffled off as a prize at Seattle's 1909 World's Fair, only to land in the ownership of the madam of a notorious brothel where he finds friendship and opportunities, in a story based on true events.
Publisher: New York :, Ballantine Books, an imprint of Random House, a division of Penguin Random House LLC,, [2017]
Edition: First edition
Copyright Date: ©2017
ISBN: 9780804176750
0804176752
Characteristics: 307 pages ; 25 cm

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superreader64
Nov 16, 2017

This book is distasteful! I read only half of it. I don't recommend this book.
What a disappointment, doesn't compare to Hotel on the Corner of Bitter and Sweet, the author's first book.
I, too, noticed the mistake about middle school. That term was not used in 1909 or 1962.

d
DorisWaggoner
Oct 19, 2017

Most of the main characters are well rounded and interesting. The beginning is touching, as famine and poverty in China's Pearl River Delta lead Yung's mother to sell him to a "man who is not your uncle," who takes him illegally to America in 1902. He ends up in a string of orphanages in early Seattle, where, as the only Asian child, he is bullied and his brilliance isn't noticed. At the Alaska Yukon Pacific Exposition in 1909, Yung, now known as Ernest Young, 12, is raffled off, becoming a houseboy at Seattle's best brothel. There he falls in love with two girls a bit older than he, and finds friendship for the first time. This is the best part of the book. Interleaved with this is Seattle's 1962 World's Fair. Ernest has been living alone, his wife descending into dementia and living with one of their two daughters. The 1962 World's Fair begins to bring back some of her memories of their early days together. These sections of the book, and the ending, are too rushed, and a bit maudlin. A native Seattleite, I noticed a few errors, some of time--Ernest at 12 is said to be in middle school, which was still called junior high in 1962. Others are minor errors of fact that Ford, also a native Seattleite, shouldn't be making. Still, an enjoyable book if not quite up to ""Hotel on the Corner of Bitter and Sweet."

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