Kelli Estes

Girl Who Wrote in Silk, The

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Highlights

Book FormatPaperback
AuthorKelli Estes
Publication Date07/07/2015
ISBN-139781492608332
GenreFiction/Asian American

About This Item

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A USA Today Bestseller!

"The Girl Who Wrote in Silk is a beautiful story that brought me to tears more than once, and was a testament to the endurance of the human spirit and the human heart. A powerful debut that proves the threads that interweave our lives can withstand time and any tide, and bind our hearts forever."-Susanna Kearsley, New York Times bestselling author

Inspired by true events, Kelli Estes's brilliant and atmospheric novel serves as a poignant tale of two women determined to do the right thing, and the power of our own stories.

The smallest items can hold centuries of secrets...

Inara Erickson is exploring her deceased aunt's island estate when she finds an elaborately stitched piece of fabric hidden in the house. As she peels back layer upon layer of the secrets it holds, Inara's life becomes interwoven with that of Mei Lein, a young Chinese girl mysteriously driven from her home a century before. Through the stories Mei Lein tells in silk, Inara uncovers a tragic truth that will shake her family to its core -- and force her to make an impossible choice.

"A touching and tender story about discovering the past to bring peace to the present."-- Duncan Jepson, author of All the Flowers in Shanghai

Specifications

Publisher
Sourcebooks
Book Format
Paperback
Original Languages
English
Number of Pages
400
Author
Kelli Estes
Title
The Girl Who Wrote in Silk
ISBN-13
9781492608332
Publication Date
07/07/2015
Assembled Product Dimensions (L x W x H)
8.10 x 5.40 x 1.20 Inches
ISBN-10
1492608335

Customer Reviews

Average Rating:(3.9)out of 5 stars
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Most helpful positive review
1 customers found this helpful
Average Rating:(5.0)out of 5 stars
What an amazing exampl...
What an amazing example of "historical fiction." This story took my emotions on a roller coaster ride. I felt a full spectrum of emotions while reading this book. The characters were well developed and became 3-D in my mind. Most of the time I struggle with a book that has two time settings, this author made it simple to go from present to past and back and forth. This book is causing me to look into small pieces of American history. I will be suggesting this book to other readers.
Most helpful negative review
Average Rating:(2.0)out of 5 stars
Estes, Kelli. The Girl...
Estes, Kelli. The Girl Who Wrote in Silk. 10 CDs. unabridged. 12.5 hrs. Blackstone Audio. 2015. ISBN 9781504606042. $34.95. Estes debut novel will enthrall fans of Asian American History. The story alternates between the turn of the nineteenth century and present day, where Inara finds a beautifully embroidered sleeve hidden in the staircase at her newly inherited island estate. Intrigued, she asks a professor of Asian history to help her find out more and together they discover a centuries worth of secrets, horror, and love stitched onto the delicate sleeve. As they are unraveling the mystery behind the sleeve, alternating chapters reveal the sorrowful life of Mei Lein, a young Chinese girl who left behind her story stitched on silk. Loosely based on historical fact, this eye opening and beautifully written novel will captivate readers and leave them wanting more. Beautifully narrated by Emily Woo Zeller who helps bring the story alive with her delicate, yet masterful prose. - Erin Cataldi, Johnson Co. P.L., Franklin, IN
Most helpful positive review
1 customers found this helpful
Average Rating:(5.0)out of 5 stars
What an amazing exampl...
What an amazing example of "historical fiction." This story took my emotions on a roller coaster ride. I felt a full spectrum of emotions while reading this book. The characters were well developed and became 3-D in my mind. Most of the time I struggle with a book that has two time settings, this author made it simple to go from present to past and back and forth. This book is causing me to look into small pieces of American history. I will be suggesting this book to other readers.
Most helpful negative review
Average Rating:(2.0)out of 5 stars
Estes, Kelli. The Girl...
Estes, Kelli. The Girl Who Wrote in Silk. 10 CDs. unabridged. 12.5 hrs. Blackstone Audio. 2015. ISBN 9781504606042. $34.95. Estes debut novel will enthrall fans of Asian American History. The story alternates between the turn of the nineteenth century and present day, where Inara finds a beautifully embroidered sleeve hidden in the staircase at her newly inherited island estate. Intrigued, she asks a professor of Asian history to help her find out more and together they discover a centuries worth of secrets, horror, and love stitched onto the delicate sleeve. As they are unraveling the mystery behind the sleeve, alternating chapters reveal the sorrowful life of Mei Lein, a young Chinese girl who left behind her story stitched on silk. Loosely based on historical fact, this eye opening and beautifully written novel will captivate readers and leave them wanting more. Beautifully narrated by Emily Woo Zeller who helps bring the story alive with her delicate, yet masterful prose. - Erin Cataldi, Johnson Co. P.L., Franklin, IN
What an amazing example of "historical fiction." This story took my emotions on a roller coaster ride. I felt a full spectrum of emotions while reading this book. The characters were well developed and became 3-D in my mind. Most of the time I struggle with a book that has two time settings, this author made it simple to go from present to past and back and forth. This book is causing me to look into small pieces of American history. I will be suggesting this book to other readers.
Estes, Kelli. The Girl Who Wrote in Silk. 10 CDs. unabridged. 12.5 hrs. Blackstone Audio. 2015. ISBN 9781504606042. $34.95. Estes debut novel will enthrall fans of Asian American History. The story alternates between the turn of the nineteenth century and present day, where Inara finds a beautifully embroidered sleeve hidden in the staircase at her newly inherited island estate. Intrigued, she asks a professor of Asian history to help her find out more and together they discover a centuries worth of secrets, horror, and love stitched onto the delicate sleeve. As they are unraveling the mystery behind the sleeve, alternating chapters reveal the sorrowful life of Mei Lein, a young Chinese girl who left behind her story stitched on silk. Loosely based on historical fact, this eye opening and beautifully written novel will captivate readers and leave them wanting more. Beautifully narrated by Emily Woo Zeller who helps bring the story alive with her delicate, yet masterful prose. - Erin Cataldi, Johnson Co. P.L., Franklin, IN

Frequent mentions

1-5 of 14 reviews
Average Rating:(5.0)out of 5 stars

What an amazing exampl...

What an amazing example of "historical fiction." This story took my emotions on a roller coaster ride. I felt a full spectrum of emotions while reading this book. The characters were well developed and became 3-D in my mind. Most of the time I struggle with a book that has two time settings, this author made it simple to go from present to past and back and forth. This book is causing me to look into small pieces of American history. I will be suggesting this book to other readers.

Average Rating:(5.0)out of 5 stars

An amazing first novel...

An amazing first novel by a new author. The mystery of a silk embroidery from the past is seamlessly woven into the present life of the woman who found it. Beautiful writing has left vivid images in my mind of the past and present day San Juan Islands. This is an author I am anxious to follow.

Average Rating:(5.0)out of 5 stars

Did Mei Lien stand on ...

Did Mei Lien stand on the edge of the boat's railing because she knew she had to or because she was forced to be there? Did this act begin or end Mei Lien's life? Did this act begin or end Inara's life? Mei Lien lived 100 years ago​. Inara lives in the present. Their lives are unknowingly connected until Inara finds a family story on a hidden embroidered sleeve in a house that belonged to Inara's ancestors and where Mei Lien and her family had lived...the connection and the secrets begin. The embroidered sleeve immediately catches Inara's attention and her curiosity. When she takes the sleeve to a Chinese professor at the local university, the sleeve and Inara immediately catch the professor's attention. THE GIRL WHO WROTE IN SILK is beautifully written and beautifully told by Ms. Estes. The characters come alive, and the storyline is quite intriguing. THE GIRL WHO WROTE IN SILK has secrets about a family home, a family connection, and an embroidered shirt sleeve that t​ells a story Inara just HAS to unravel. Just what were all of these secrets? The story and the unraveling le​a​d to surprises for the characters and to a marvelous book. ​ ​Ms Estes weaved a beautiful​, gripping, but sad ​tale that spanned from the 1800's to present day. THE GIRL WHO WROTE IN SILK was difficult to put down simply because you will want to find out​ about the embroidered sleeve as well as to find out​ how Inara and Daniel Chin unravel the mystery even though we already know ​the answer ​as Ms. Estes skillfully goes back and forth revealing the past a​n​d the present. THE GIRL WHO WROTE IN SILK is a​n ​appealing, alluring read​ with charming, unforgettable characters​. You will love Mei Lien and admire her for her courage. You will also love her husband, Joseph, but despise Duncan Campbell. The book is as captivating as the book's title and cover, and THE GIRL WHO WROTE IN SILK becomes even more intriguing each time you turn the page and clues are revealed. I thoroughly enjoyed THE GIRL WHO WROTE IN SILK, but have some tissues ready. I hope you have the pleasure of reading this marvelous book. ​ A spectacular debut novel. 5/5 This book was given to me free of charge and without compensation by the publisher in return for an honest review.​

Average Rating:(5.0)out of 5 stars

I thoroughly enjoyed t...

I thoroughly enjoyed this story; read it in just over a day. Another tale that tells two stories, one in the past and the other current. I had not heard of the Chinese Exclusion Act of 1882, and didn't know much about the ethnic cleansing that occurred and was not included in my history classes. The layers in the story come from the story itself, not from the depth of the writing. Really only the two main characters are explored in any detail, but that's alright.

Average Rating:(5.0)out of 5 stars

I just finished a marv...

I just finished a marvelous novel from Kelli Estes. It is called The Girl Who Wrote in Silk. I just loved this book and did not want it to end. The book starts out in February 1886 in Puget Sound, Washington Territory. Liu Mei Lien (Liu is her surname) works with her father in his shop in what is now Seattle in Washington Territory. The white people in the area are not happy with the Chinese. They do not like them coming in and taking their jobs. Mei Lien dresses like a boy as protection when she is out in the city (a girl could be attacked). One morning just after Mei Lien awakened there are white men outside their homes with weapons. All the Chinese are being escorted out of the city to a ship called the Prince of the Pacific. Mei Lien, her father, Liu Huang Fu, and her grandmother (who is frail) are forced onto the ship (and have to pay for passage). The ship is to take them to San Francisco. Once the ship is underway Mei Lien overhears Duncan Campbell (owner of ship) talking about the Chinese on the ship. Campbell has no intention of allowing the Chinese to stay on his ship. He is going to dump them into the water when they get far enough out. When Mei Lien tells her father what is going to happen, he gives her his money bag and, when they are near the last island before open water, he pushes her off the ship. Inara Erickson has just inherited her Aunt Dahlia's estate on Orca Island called Rothesay (near Seattle, Washington). Inara loved going their when she was younger before the death of her mother. Inara has just graduated from graduate school (majored in business) and has a job lined up at Starbucks. Inara is a descendant of Duncan Campbell. Her family runs the business Campbell started. It was originally called Campbell Lines but is now called Premier Maritime Group. PMG is run by Charles Erickson (Inara's father). Charles has high expectations for his daughter. He expects her to sell the estate and return to Seattle. Inara is exploring the house when she discovers a loose step in Aunt Dahlia's house (she lived in a little house behind Rothesay). There is a cloth wrapped bundle in the step. When Inara unwraps it she finds a beautifully embroidered blue silk sleeve. It has lovely silk embroidery picturing scenes. Inara would like to discover more about the sleeve. She feels that it is important. Inara calls Dr. Daniel Chin who teaches China studies. This sleeve leads Inara and Daniel on a journey into the past. We get to find out what happened to Liu Mei Lien after she was shoved into the water near Orcas Island. It is amazing how the past can affect the present. This is a moving book that will captivate you from the very first page. I give The Girl Who Wrote in Silk 5 out of 5 stars. This is one of the best books I have read this year. The Girl Who Wrote in Silk is superbly composed. It is one of those books that you will continue to think about for days after you have finished reading it. This is Kelli Estes first novel and I impatiently await her next book. I received a complimentary copy of The Girl Who Wrote in Silk from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review. The review and opinions expressed are my own.


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