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"You have English blood, like us," Miss Rose assured Eliza when she was old enough to understand. "Only someone from the British colony would have thought to leave you in a basket on the doorstep of the British Import and Export Company, Limited. I am sure they knew how good-hearted my brother Jeremy is, and felt sure he would take you in. In those days I was longing to have a child, and you fell into my arms, sent by God to be brought up in the solid principles of the Protestant faith and the English language."The family servant, Mama Fresia, has a different point of view, however: "You, English? Don't get any ideas, child. You have Indian hair, like mine." And certainly Eliza's almost mystical ability to recall all the events of her life would seem to stem more from the Indian than the Protestant side.
As Eliza grows up, she becomes less tractable, and when she falls in love with Joachin Andieta, a clerk in Jeremy's firm, her adoptive family is horrified. They are even more so when a now-pregnant Eliza follows her lover to California where he has gone to make his fortune in the 1849 gold rush. Along the way Eliza meets Tao Chi'en, a Chinese doctor who saves her life and becomes her closest friend. What starts out as a search for a lost love becomes, over time, the discovery of self; and by the time Eliza finally catches up with the elusive Joachin, she is no longer sure she still wants what she once wished for. Allende peoples her novel with a host of colorful secondary characters. She even takes the narrative as far afield as China, providing an intimate portrait of Tao Chi'en's past before returning to 19th-century San Francisco, where he and Eliza eventually fetch up. Readers with a taste for the epic, the picaresque, and romance that is satisfyingly complex will find them all in Daughter of Fortune. --Margaret Prior --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
But I enjoyed reading about the excitement of gold rush-era San Francisco and some of the unique characters who built their own unusual successes.
What an interesting way to learn about the city's beginning through the travels, perils, and stories of the great characters.
For those of you who were upset by the abrupt ending of this story, will find it continued, many years later, in Portrait in Sepia, through the eyes of Eliza's granddaughter.Published 7 days ago by AllieBB
I must admit I love Isabel Allende and historical fiction. Loving this novel was not hard to do. Ms. Read morePublished 8 days ago by Arlene A. Osmon
So rich with information! I will read another of her books!Published 18 days ago by linda k. silver
I was upset when this book was over. I wanted more. I wish I spoke better Spanish so I could read Allade' s novels her language.Published 1 month ago by E. H. Montgomery
This is a beautifully written story that transports you to a different time, difference
cultures and was a wonderful read. Treat yourself.
Such a great story...loved the time period and the location of the story, loved the strength of the main character.Published 1 month ago by Avid Amazon Shopper
The only other Allende book I read before this one was Zorro, which I really enjoyed, this one has the same kind of feel to it. Read morePublished 1 month ago by asil525
I love historical fiction and this book satisfied my craving. Having visited Valparaiso, Chile a couple of times and parts of California, my imagination went wild over trying to... Read morePublished 1 month ago by clairee