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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.
Love her writing and the store is great. Looking forward to reading the follow up book.Published 14 days ago by Reader in Vienna
Although the premise for the heroin to come to Sacramento and San Francisco was a little far fetched, it gave an interesting account of the activities and attitudes in the gold... Read morePublished 28 days ago by Julie Knapp
This book came up in conversation recently, (yet again, because I brought it up), and I realized I'd never posted a review for it. Read morePublished 28 days ago by Always Reading
Loved learning. About San Francisco during gold rush days. She makes it come alivePublished 29 days ago by Mary Reich
Ultimately it was good, but took me a while to get into it. I would enjoy it while reading it, but could put it down and not have a strong desire to pick it back up. Read morePublished 1 month ago by Robyn Roth
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 1 month ago by AllieBB
I must admit I love Isabel Allende and historical fiction. Loving this novel was not hard to do. Ms. Read morePublished 1 month ago by Arlene A. Osmon