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The Jade Rabbit [Kindle Edition]

Mark Matthews
4.1 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (32 customer reviews)

Print List Price: $10.99
Kindle Price: $2.99
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Book Description

 Adopted from China, raised in Detroit, and on a mission to save children on all sides of the planet. Janice Zhu Woodward lives her life like she runs her marathons: obsessed and driven. It takes all of her strength to not be destroyed working at a runaway shelter. Fueled by angry parents, stories of ghosts who haunt the shelter's basement, and her own history of being left by a birth-mother who may have long forgotten her, Janice directs her energy into running a sub three hour marathon. Training injuries, failed goals, and unexpected trauma test her will and take her near her breaking point.

When a mysterious girl with dreadlocks is abandoned at the shelter's front door, Janice becomes her surrogate mother and risks everything to save her. Only a miraculous, unforgettable marathon through the streets of Detroit can save them both.

Editorial Reviews


"One of the best fictional books I have read in a long time."
Sara Wyen, Words To Run By

"I found myself wanting to know what would happen next and how each character would deal with the challenges presented to them. I read it in less than a week."
M. Lommer, Families With Children From China, N. California

"A unique view of adoption and adoption related grief, loss, and gain, a unique view inside the life of one fictitious girl who I wanted to cheer for across the finish line."
-Kelly Raudenbash, My Overthinking Adoption Blog

"I have really really enjoyed reading this story and highly recommend it...  VERY entertaining!" 
Janae Jacobs, "The Hungry Runner Girl"

"Captured the delicate balance between the dark forces of everyday life and the hope that keeps most of us going"
-Peter Rosch, author of My Dead Friend Sarah

"An especially emotionally-charged novel and a must-read for anyone familiar with or curious about the psychological benefits associated with distance running."

-Rachel Philllips, The Outdoor Athlete.

From the Author




Product Details

  • File Size: 652 KB
  • Print Length: 259 pages
  • Publisher: Wicked Run Press; 2nd edition (August 22, 2011)
  • Sold by: Amazon Digital Services, Inc.
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B005IQM8J2
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Not Enabled
  • Lending: Enabled
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #684,507 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
  •  Would you like to give feedback on images?

Customer Reviews

4.1 out of 5 stars
4.1 out of 5 stars
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
9 of 9 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars a must-read i'm fortunate to have found May 23, 2012
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
"We regret to report that the large majority of the population finds the howl of a universe in pain to be wonderful background noise while shopping, golfing, and watching football..."

In recent memory I've not read a book that captured the delicate balance between the dark forces of everyday life and the hope that keeps most of us going. Hope might not be the right word. I find it far easier to review a novel when it is seriously flawed, and extremely difficult to shower it with praise when it deserves it, as does The Jade Rabbit. I had zero expectations going into this story. It was a book I'd not have found on my own, and I consider myself extremely lucky to have had it put in front of me by whatever cosmic forces it took.

In my own efforts to depict the fragile zeitgeist of mankind, I find myself often relying on the absurd, or at least the quasi-unbelievable, to build the story around. Mark Matthews has left me envious, because in capturing the same he has told a completely realistic and beautifully crafted tale that exposes the best and worst in us all. The many underlying themes are woven together expertly, and as I continued my own mental marathon with Janice I couldn't help but wonder if the author himself had experienced all of this firsthand.

There will be some who pass on this book, and that's fine-it may very well not be for everyone. But I do hope that readers will find it when they need it, even if, like me, they didn't realize how desperately they did.
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8 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Enjoyed and Recommended! May 12, 2012
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
You can feel the depth of emotions that Janice feels as an adopted Chinese orphan. Chinese baby girls are often abandoned by their mothers, especially in rural areas, as they are considered to be more liabilities than assets in their families where boys are more desired. As an adult, Janice has become a social worker, in her job she tries to enact change in a very depressed area of Detroit working at a shelter where minority runaways are at great risk of repeating the cycle of poverty or falling into crime or drug addiction. Janice's adopted mother is an avid marathon runner and Janice takes up running as an avocation. This book is her story and how running helps her deal with all of the issues facing her, almost like a form of psychotherapy. A real and vivid portrayal of a young woman's life, her fears, her goals, her desires.
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12 of 14 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars An Absolutley Beautiful Book November 30, 2011
This was a book that I never naturally would have picked up to read had I not been asked to review. And I would have been seriously deprived had I not done so. This book was so good.

This book was one that blurred the lines of fantasy and reality. It caused me to feel, to think, to ponder, and to dream. This book left an imprint on me. There are some books that after reading, you are forever changed--this was one of those books for me. I'm so glad I had the opportunity to read this.

Mark Matthew's writing style was beautiful and lyrical. I loved how he wrote this story. I loved his characters and the plot line.
This novel opened my eyes and allowed me to explore a world very different than my own. This book caused me to think about myself and my own life, any book that can do that is a great book.

This book follows the story of Janice, who works at Moonlight, a shelter for runaways. Janice is a Chinese woman who was adopted into an American family married to an African-American man named Randall. I loved both Randall and Janice.

This novel represented beliefs that on the surface were very different than my own; however, it also paralleled my own beliefs so clearly at the same time. That was partly what was so incredible about this book.

Definitely worth buying and reading--this novel comes highly recommended.
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9 of 11 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Great character development, intriguing story line January 31, 2012
I was initially interested in this story because I have daughters who were born in China and I also enjoy running. However, if you are not a runner, do not let it dissuade you from reading this book. This story is not about running. It is about a character (Janice, a Chinese-American adult adoptee) who runs, and in her running, finds a way through complicated events in her life. Although most of us who run will never aspire to a sub-3-hour Marathon, we do understand the drive, the description of the mental clarity that follows a long run, the anxious and unsatisfied feeling when having to take a few days off due to injury or illness. These details are part of what makes Janice a believable character, and help develop the reader's understanding of Janice's relationship with her mother, her feelings about her birthmother, and her own desire to have a child. An interesting aspect of the book is that, through Janice's thoughts and actions, the author brings up serious issues including racism, child abuse, unanticipated pregnancies, abortion, and infant abandonment, without seeming contrived or preachy in any way. The book is thought-provoking in that way.

My only critique of the book is the characters' frequent use of adjectives as adverbs, which I found distracting, and which seemed inappropriate for a character such as Janice, who possesses a graduate-level degree. (But that editorial oversight was not enough to warrant less than a 5-star review.)

My favorite parts of the book were the relationships: Janice's bonds with her mother, her best friend Cassandra (also an adoptee), her husband Randall, and Hailey & Sharleen, two girls at the shelter.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Run your own race
Being a great fan of Mark Matthews' writing I chose this book although I knew it was about running. And I just hate running. Read more
Published 6 hours ago by Barbara Tsipouras
5.0 out of 5 stars Truly Enjoyed The Jade Rabbit
Thoroughly enjoyed this book. Multiple story lines in here and some very interesting characters. The books is written about Janice, a runner who is an adopted Asian woman, an... Read more
Published 2 days ago by Keith P McGorisk
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
A very easy and Enjoyable read.
Published 2 months ago by David
4.0 out of 5 stars A lot more here than first meets the eye
This is a beautifully written book that deals with international adoption and the feelings of the main character, who, despite having a wonderful adoptive Mom & Dad, struggles with... Read more
Published 15 months ago by albertagirl
3.0 out of 5 stars Okay
I wasn't entirely sure about this book when I began reading it. This book was well written, however there were a few minor things that I personally didn't enjoy. Read more
Published 19 months ago by Tessa Rivers
5.0 out of 5 stars The Rabbit Rouses
Intriguing story about Chinese adoption, troubled youth, and distance running. This story illustrates a line from Rudyard Kipling's poem entitled If. Read more
Published 21 months ago by R. F. Terpening Jr.
5.0 out of 5 stars Most Thought Provoking Read I've Had In Awhile
This was a very atypical read for me because I usually read mystery/suspense or romance books purely for entertainment. I am SO glad I read this thought provoking book. Read more
Published on April 16, 2013 by Reading Runner
5.0 out of 5 stars You don't have to be a runner to love this one!
This book was referred to me by a friend who is a runner. She loved the book and our mutual love of running brought me to it. But this is not a running book. Read more
Published on February 8, 2013 by Jack Schrumpf Jr.
4.0 out of 5 stars This Jade is a Gem
The Jade Rabbit was recommended to me directly from the author, Mark Matthews. We have followed each other on Twitter since winning Little Century by Anna Keesey through a Friday... Read more
Published on January 1, 2013 by LadyT_TNT
4.0 out of 5 stars Just Run With It!
The Jade Rabbit by Mark Matthews is a story that resonates with me on many levels. Much like Janice, the book's protagonist, I too was abandoned by my birth-mother and then... Read more
Published on October 24, 2012 by Liz Ferro
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More About the Author

Mark Matthews has worked in the behavioral health field for over 20 years. He is a graduate of the University of Michigan, a licensed professional counselor, and lives near Detroit with his wife and 2 daughters.

His novel "On the Lips of Children," from Books of the Dead Press, was nominated as a semi-finalist for the 2014 Best Kindle Book Awards. It is based on a predawn run on a dark San Diego trail just as described in the novel.

The follow up to this novel, MILK-BLOOD, is set within the urban blight of Detroit and is also based on a true setting and some true circumstances. STRAY was his first novel, and takes place at a substance abuse treatment center with an animal shelter right next door within barking distance.

Matthews is an avid runner, and his second novel, The Jade Rabbit, is the story of a woman, adopted from China, who is raised in Detroit and runs marathons to deal with lingering trauma. A non-fiction book on running and addiction called "Chasing the Dragon: Running to Get High" is also available on amazon.

He blogs at "Writing, Running, and Chasing the Dragon."

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