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The 228 Legacy Paperback – July 25, 2013

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Editorial Reviews

Review

"Set in Los Angeles in 1980, Chow depicts how each woman must face the parts of their lives that do not measure up... this story is touching in its depiction of the characters' changing relationships." --Publishers Weekly

"An impressive debut!  Moving, hopeful, and triumphant.  A compelling read." --Jane Porter, national bestselling author of The Good Daughter

"While relationships lie at the core of this light, enjoyable read, some weightier issues of history and identity make it stand out. This book would make a great beach read and is appropriate for the Young Adult reader as well as for adults." --B. Morrison, award-winning author of Innocent: Confessions of a Welfare Mother

"Chow neatly weaves the lives of her characters... The story was interesting and a good read." --Laurel Mountain Post

"I was from a family of 228 victims, and I can identify with the feelings of Silk. A highly recommended book." --Wencheng Lin, president of the Pacific Times and past president of Taiwanese American Pen Club

"Chow's The 228 Legacy explores traumatic events such as the 228 massacre of 1947 in Taiwan not through historical fiction but through the imprint these events now leave in America, generations later. The effect is both subtle and beautiful." --Anna Wu, TaiwaneseAmerican.org

About the Author

Jennifer J. Chow, a Chinese-American, married into the Taiwanese culture. The 228 Legacy was inspired by the family stories she heard after viewing photos of a two-million-person human chain commemorating 228. She has traveled multiple times to Taiwan and visited places dedicated to the incident. Her experience with the elderly comes from a gerontology specialization at Cornell University and her geriatric social work experience. Visit Jennifer online at www.jenniferjchow.com to learn more about her work.

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Product Details

  • Paperback: 322 pages
  • Publisher: Martin Sisters Publishing (July 25, 2013)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1625530390
  • ISBN-13: 978-1625530394
  • Product Dimensions: 5.5 x 0.8 x 8.5 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.1 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (26 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #861,146 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Jennifer J. Chow, an Asian-American writer, holds a Bachelor's degree from Cornell University and a Master's in Social Welfare from UCLA. Her geriatric work experience influences her stories. She lives in Los Angeles, California.

Her multicultural women's fiction, The 228 Legacy, was a Finalist for 2013 ForeWord Reviews' Book of the Year Award and an Honorable Mention for the 2015 San Francisco Book Festival. She also writes the Winston Wong Cozy Mystery Series under J.J. Chow.

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

5 of 5 people found the following review helpful By Amazon Customer on August 3, 2013
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I loved this story, or I should say stories as this is a book of several characters' stories which are woven together in love and memory. This book has so many engaging elements - historical context, spanning of several generations, coming of age, mother/daughter relationships, family secrets, immigrant and second-generation American experience, aging. facing sickness and mortality. I like the technique of writing with different voices as each character with a voice becomes real - flawed and sympathetic. The aging mother we roll our eyes at - why so irrational? why so narrow-minded? By knowing her story we understand her and perhaps sympathize more with our own parents. This story is about life, about caring - how we care for one another, our innate need to care, how we deal with the loss of those we care about. This is the reason I love to read - the moments of recognition - the feeling of a common humanity, shared experience in spite of our different backgrounds and history. I finished the book feeling like I knew these characters, that they were me, my family - me as a young girl who felt different among her peers, about my parents immigrant experience and who are aging, I also liked that I learned about Taiwanese history which I knew nothing about. (This is pretty much the only way I enjoy learning about history - when it is in the context of a good story.) I highly recommend this book and am looking forward to reading more from Miss Chow.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By Esse on August 22, 2013
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From the get go, I was absorbed by the three main characters of this Taiwanese grandmother-mother-daughter relationship--Silk, Lisa, and Abbey--in a story set mostly in 1980's Southern California. The gradual revealing of their character traits along with intriguing back stories gave me a strong connection to them as people. I also appreciated the other main character, Jack, a hard working groundskeeper who had just reached retirement age; yet who also had his hopeful view of retirement dashed by a sad event. I liked how the author, Jennifer Chow, drew me in with a good amount of eloquent description intermixed with dialogue. This helped the plot move easily while at the same time satisfied my desire for a novel to be more "literary" than not.

This novel paints a touching picture of the human condition as it pertains to family relationships and opportunities for redemption. That's not to say that it's all sunshine and rainbows; in fact, the very title alludes to the not-well-known, horrific events referred to as the 228 massacre. I appreciated how the author chose to indirectly weave these events into her novel because--for a period which seems to have been such a terror for those living through it--we as readers are not forced to be tortured by this same trauma; rather we're given a window to glimpse how this and other difficult situations in this world can both grip us and change us from within. In reading this novel, I was taken on a journey where life and time seemed to have been lost, but yet came away feeling that it is never too late for hope and healing to be found.

I also enjoy the perspective that the author, Jennifer Chow, writes with; finding delight in how she details the world in distinctive and beautiful ways that we don't normally see.

.....
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7 of 8 people found the following review helpful By T. Dale on July 31, 2013
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Silk and her family feel like dear friends as you take this journey with them, all the way from 1980's Los Angeles to Taiwan and back again. What a beautifully written first novel. I can't wait to read more from this author!
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By David's Wife on September 20, 2013
Format: Kindle Edition
This book covers many issues. The little publicized 228 Massacre in Taiwan, the sandwich generation, sexual predators, cancer, and familial relationships. I had a difficult time getting into the book and almost gave up, but I looked at reviews on it and they were good, so I gave it a try. If one wants to read about these issues, then it is a good book for that. I did not find it to be spectacular literature though - just a book written to include those issues. I received this book free to review from Netgalley.(
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By cpark on August 27, 2013
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I enjoy Asian American fiction and was excited when I heard about this book. Having now read the book, it stands out to me from amongst other Asian American novels for several reasons. First, I liked how the characters were not a typical middle class Asian American family, but were more working class. I thought the author did a really good job depicting the individual struggles and unique perspectives of these characters.

The book dealt with serious themes of losing a spouse, dealing with cancer, and trying to fit in at school, but it was written in a light style that made it accessible. Often, Asian American fiction can be very heavy, dark, and intense. I really liked how each character came to find something positive to get into that helped turn their lives around. The overall message of the book was quite uplifting.

I learned about Taiwanese history, but also appreciated how the issues that the characters dealt with crossed color lines.

Things happen quickly in the book. With its short chapters and fast pace, I found it hard to put down! This is a great first novel and I look forward to reading more by this author.
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