Thursday, August 24, 2017

Outrun the Moon

Mercy Wong wants more for herself than the life prescribed by society as a Chinese American in 1906.  She graduated from the school in Chinatown, but it only goes to 8th grade.  Mercy knows if she is ever to be a successful business woman she needs more education.  Her dreams aren't just for herself; her younger brother has weak lungs, and Mercy knows he won't survive long if he has to work in her father's laundry.

Through trickery and business acumen, Mercy manages to secure a trial spot at St. Clair's, the most prestigious girls' school in San Francisco.  She is totally out of her element amidst her wealthy white peers, but she is determined to be successful.

Then, a devastating earthquake strikes on April 18 leveling most of the city in a single blow.  Mercy and her classmates end up living in a tent encampment in the park with other survivors.  Everyone has lost something, and some people have had lost the people they loved most.

Author Stacey Lee shares the story of the San Francisco earthquake from a different perspective giving the reader window into the terrible disaster with a dose of realism when it comes to the racism and division that was common at that time.  Mercy is a strong character with a powerful spirit.  Highly recommended!

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