Simon Choa-Johnston: The House of Wives



Summary The House of Wives

Rating 355 starsWhat drew me initially to this book is the idea of two women of different cultures in 19th century Hong Kong finding out that they share a husband Talk about family drama What was even amazing is that author Simon Choa Johnston based his book on his own uniue family historyThe reader is pulled into the personal turmoil of both women as they earn to The Debutantes Daring Proposal (Regency Bachelors live with each other and their families withimited success Choa Johnston does a good job giving the wives Semah and Pearl very distinct voices and as a reader I could sympathize with the struggle of each of the women It was sad to think of all of the years wasted that the two women could have been supportive and close but at the same time sharing one s husband wasn t something that either of them signed up forWhile I found the premise uite interesting for me there was a distinct difference between the first two thirds of the book and the remaining third The first two thirds as we meet the wives and see how Emanuel s business takes off was uite interesting Choa Johnston brings to The Couple in the Dream Suite (Chatsfield Novella, life the Jewish and Chinese cultures as well as the energy of Hong Kong I d rate that first part of the book a solid four stars with the remainder of the book dropping to three stars It was still interesting but I found the energy to wane which was surprising since it s at that point when the wives come together and I thought there d be emotional fireworks During theast third of the book there were also Pleasing Her SEAL large chunks of time that were uickly explained away but this resulted in me not having as much of an emotional connection to the wives and eveness with Emanuel as the story began its conclusionEmanuel came to a very uniue and different solution to his multiple wife issue which was uite different than how others had handled similar situations during that time and makes for a very uniue story Choa Johnston s writing was uite descriptive in regards to the era and cultures and I appreciated that he included a description of his family history at the back of the book to give his readers background information Overall this was a good read It was an interesting ook at different cultures the author s uniue family history and the power and strength of womenDisclaimer My sincere thanks to Penguin Group Random House Publishing for providing me with a complimentary paperback copy of this book in exchange for my honest review Step out of the here and now into an exotic world skillfully realized In The House of Wives we meet Emanuel a Jewish man from India born into a comfortable family He has ambitions for and so marries a woman who brings a arge dowry Emanuel invests his money into the opium trade and spends the next decade building his investments His marriage is unsatisfying and ultimately he decides to move to Hong Kong permanently He falls for a woman much younger and after she converts to Judaism marries her on the condition that he will give up his first wife But wife 1 doesn t take that news The Insider lightly and journeys to China to take her place by her husband Which brings us to the House of Wives two very strong and stubborn women under one roof Choa Johnston writes beautifully Each of the characters has a distinct voice and the setting is vivid There were a few plot points that I found uncomfortable and ultimately made Emanuel s character distasteful to me So I found the first part of the book that focused on him to beess engaging Once the women came together I felt the book started to come alive and I admit I had a hard time putting it down because I wanted to see the development of their very complicated relationship Won in a giveaway but this did not affect my reviewu What makes a woman become a servant And what makes her become the mistress Is it money Or birthThe House of Wives sweeps readers back to 19th century Calcutta Simon Choa Johnston weaves together a fascinating tale of two women and the man that they will fight to the death for Not to mention that the descriptions transport the reader back to a bygone eraEmanuel Belilos is a young Jewish man who seeks to outdo his businessman father and make his fortune But before Emanuel can do all that he desires he is wed to Semah Ezra Semah is young intelligent and beautiful But both she and her new husband find themselves uite unhappy With their marriage on unstable ground Emanuel wastes no time in fleeing to Hong Kong with firm hopes that he will make his fortune in the opium tradeIt is in Hong Kong where Emanuel meets Pearl the daughter of one of his eventual partners Over a number of years their first meeting will Football Dynamo lead to something much Il get back to that in a bitEmanuel does return to Semah in Calcutta and although they briefly attempt to make their union a happy one Semah remains barren and Emanuel s trips to Hong Kong become Payback (The Secret Life of Samantha McGregor, longer andonger My heart truly ached for Semah At this point I m not feeling good about Emanuel and uestion whether he s really making an attempt at his marriage I have to talk about Pearl16 years old who I was ready to not Band of Soldiers like However Pearl is well educated beautiful and uick to speak up for herself Of course Emanuel falls inove and plans to woo Pearl Like Semah Pearl will also have her way and makes it very clear to her husband that she expects to be heard as an eual Their marriage turns out to be very passionate but marital bliss is to be short The Jewels of Manhattan lived Because Semah arrives to fight for her rightful place at her husband s side And there are definitely fireworks But I couldn t stop admiring both of these strong minded women that certainly appeared to be made of stronger stuff than the man they call husbandWhat Emanuel does next is certainly unprecedented in terms of any other story I ve ever stumbled across He divides his home to accommodate both women I do declare that no soap opera writer could have unfolde. Two women compete for the affections of their opium merchant husband in a tale of friendship fortune and rivalry in colonial Hong Kong In 1862 a young Jew from Calcutta named Emanuel Belilioseaves his dutiful wife Semah and sets sail for Hong Kong to make his fortune in the opium trade There he grows into a pros.

D the next series of chapters as fantastically as Choa Johnston does As the women settle down into their new home a conciliatory approach to their Nation as Mother lives takes over as soon as they both become mothers I will say that eventually Emanuel does manage to show aittle bit common sense in one aspect and began to enter my good graces But not by muchIn addition I absolutely The Tryst Betrayed loved and appreciated the author s note Fascinating personal family historyThanks to NetGalley and Penguin Random House Canada for a copy of this book in exchange for an honest reviewGoodreads review published 120416 35 stars Knowing that this novel is based on the author s own ancestor an opium merchant in Hong Kong and his two yes two wives peaked my interest Through the ups and downs of their relationships and the rise and fall of fortunes this is good story with some pacing issues Still worth a read A fascinating plot based on the author s own familyore two women one English and the other Chinese share one husband and Barron's AP Biology Flash Cards, 3rd Edition live under the same roof The author wrote the novel is such a way that the reader does not blame but rather can sympathize with the husband and his two wives Each of them is wonderfully portrayed with their own rational thoughts choices and feelings whichent credence to their plight Beyond the family drama the author did an exceptional job of relaying the historical details of the opium trade with all its intrigues wealth and associated crime Life in Hong Kong during that era was also vibrantly recreated Although the pacing sometimes slowed the entire novel was beautifully written with a gentle and easy to read prose I very much enjoyed reading the author s personal notes at the end of the book which described his own family history This book would initiate very interesting discussions for book groups For fans of historical fiction who want an exotic setting weaved into an intricate plot then this is the book to read Truly fascinating from start to finishy uniue and different solution to his multiple wife issue which was uite different than how others had handled similar situations during that time and makes for a very uniue story Choa Johnston s writing was uite descriptive in regards to the era and cultures and I appreciated that he included a description of his family history at the back of the book to give his readers background information Overall this was a good read It was an interesting Amrita Sher-Gil look at different cultures the author s uniue family history and the power and strength of womenDisclaimer My sincere thanks to Penguin Group Random House Publishing for providing me with a complimentary paperback copy of this book in exchange for my honest reviewThank you to Penguin Group Random House Publishig for providing me with a free copy of this book in exchange for an honest review Thank you for visiting my blog where the greatest historical fiction is reviewed For fascinating women of history bios and women s fiction please visit The thing about opium is that it makes pain or difficulty unimaginable Sebastian FaulksSimon Choa Johnston a Canadian author pens a heart touching yet intense historical fiction The House of Wives that narrates the story of three human souls all connected by the trade and the aura of opium where an opium merchant gets so blinded by the hunger to be a successful businessman that he drags the two most important people of hisife into it thus irking up a crossfire between those two individuals until they all find peace to Flashback My Life And Times In Bollywood And Beyond live togetherSynopsis Two women compete for the affections of their opium merchant husband in a tale of friendship fortune and rivalry in colonial Hong KongIn 1862 a young Jew from Calcutta named Emanuel Belilioseaves his dutiful wife Semah and sets sail for Hong Kong to make his fortune in the opium trade There he grows into a prosperous and respectable merchant eventually falling in City Improbable love with his Chinese business partner s daughter Pearl a delicate beauty twenty years his junior As a wedding present he builds for her the most magnificent mansion in Hong Kong Then Semah arrives unannounced from Calcutta to take her place as mistress of the houseandife will change irrevocably for all of themInspired by the The Big Bookshelf lives of Choa Johnston s ancestors The House of Wives is an unforgettable novel about the machinations of the early opium trade and about two remarkable women determined to secure a dynasty for their children in the tumultuous British Crown colony Emanuel is a Jewish man who after the completion of his graduation successfullyands himself up and guides himself to move towards the world of opium selling thereby earning a name as well as reputation in the society And hence when an opportunity of marrying a rich Jewish businessman s daughter Semah with an overpriced dowry knocks up at the door Emanuel grabs it immediately as he needs capital to take a voyage to Hong Kong where he will finally set up his opium trading business Luckily for him things get accordingly as his plan and Emanuel earns a name in the rich and aristocratic Jewish community in Calcutta In one of his many Hong Kong trips Emanuel falls head over heels in No Future for You love with a Chinese young woman Pearl and he instantly marries her and welcomes her to a mansion built especially for her in Hong Kong and within a few months too Emanuel s first wife Semah tooands up in that very same mansion where he SOS Schlank ohne Sport - lives with his second wife Pearl Immediately an inevitable war of extreme hatred starts between the two women and Emanuel must do something to stop his two wives from hating each other and not to mention Emanuel is in dire need of a heir but can these two women provide himThe author has penned this book based on his grandfather s personal experience thereby telling an untold story that spans through so many decades This story is mainly focused on opiu. Perous and respectable merchant eventually falling inove with his Chinese business partner's daughter Pearl a delicate beauty twenty years his junior As a wedding present he builds for her the most magnificent mansion in Hong Kong Then Semah arrives unannounced from Calcutta to take her place as mistress of the.

( FREE The House of Wives ) author Simon Choa–Johnston – cafe1919.org

M selling and trading during the British era both in Calcutta India and in Hong Kong that which the readers are not much aware about hence the author did a marvelous job in opening as well as enlightening the minds of the readers about this esser known opium trade and its harmful yet alluring effects through this story The book s cover image turns out to be uite enchanting for the eyes of the readers reflecting an irresistible aura through itThe author s writing style is extremely expressive and elouent as he aces the whole story with evocative emotions that holds the power to move the readers deeply The narrative is poignant and interesting enough to keep the readers hooked into the story Making India Work line till the very end and not to mention the dialogues are inspired fromocal dialect with its proper translation thereby making the book an informative one for the readers The story has a moderate pace as there are so many Everwar (Cal Leandros, layers that the author has depicted with so much detailing that will make the readers visualize those right before their own eyes The story is told in third person POV from the three character s voice and at the end of each chapter the author has ended it with an unexpected twist that will make the readers anticipate for the conclusionThe backdrop is simply magical and striking that will instantly transport the readers both back in time and back to a destination The story is set against the British ruled Calcutta inocalities of Jews where they made their name and The Red Hat Society Cookbook living in the society The author has painted that portrait of Calcutta by vividly capturing its then streets filled with hand pulled rickshaws European fashion English folks the crowded alleys of hawkers shouting at the top of theirungs business hungry Jews and the Hoogly river thus reflecting an old yet rich Calcutta that No Way Home local readers can easily relate to The portrait of Hong Kong is splendidly arrested for thearger part of the story with its traditional styled palaces to the then fashion to its warm nature people to its politics to its finance to its Sequins and Spurs landscapes which will make the readers feel that authentic flair and aura through the author s words while reading this book The timeline too is in perfect sync with theandscapes and the culture of both Calcutta and Hong Kong The characters are uite well developed as they are DK Adventures laced with multi dimensions that are revealed by the author gradually with the course of the story The characters have depth as they are supported by backstories right from the very beginning of their childhood that will make the readers easily comprehend with the characters mindset Emanuel is a man who is not only hard working but is way too ambitious that on his journey to achieve success and power that he forgets about the people whooves and cares about him although his flaws are what makes him so interesting on the other hand Semah has forever yearned for In The Name of God love from her husband but she rarely got it from him yet she devoted herife towards him thus making her brave with a weakness in her heart And astly Pearl is another such woman who despite of getting ove from her husband has always despised him as he allowed his first wife to share the same roof with her her jealousy gave her a power that readers will find it intimidating about her Yes all three characters are not only flawed but has also undergone Operation Lipstick lot of struggles and challenges that will only make themook real in the eyes of the readers Long after the end of the story the readers will find it difficult to shake the three prominent and striking characters from their heads The supporting characters are also well etched outThe story is not only about opium trade but is also about From Blah to Awe love and mostly about an unusual friendship that could not wither away even in the end when there was no perfect happy ending The author portrays the bond of two wives with so much emotion transition challenges and shared motherhood that the readers are bound to feel a connection towards these two women In a nutshell this intriguing book will compel the minds of all the historical fiction as well as the contemporary fiction readers but I suggest this is a must read heart breaking yet exciting story that needs to be experienced by one and allVerdict A poignant yet enlightening story about two wives andots of opium between them Courtesy Thanks to the author Simon Choa Johnston s publicist for giving me the opportunity to read and review this book I was drawn to the storyline and history of this novel I found the characters captivating Especially the two women who s personalities overshadow Emanuel s in the second half of this novel The manipulation and oathing was ike watching a tragedy unfold If anything it was true to how women think and Choa Johnston created such strong women with very different ideals The history of the opium trade in Hong Kong was also interesting to earn about This was a good read which was at parts slow moving but at the same time held my attention throughout A good story Maybe dragged a bit The opium trade in China is always fascinating reading Must reread the Amit Ghosh series There are many things that drew me to this book the setting and the time period because they are both something that I don t know much about or read about the fact that it is a Canadian writer and this is the story of his ancestors the plot of the two wives of one man iving together in the same home And all of this wrapped up together made for a ovely book I earned so much about the culture and the time that I had never heard about mainly the Jewish communities in India the opium trade between India and China I also thought that the writing was beautiful and descriptive I had read before that Choa Johnston is a playwright and that is evident through the writing A beautiful and interesting story. Houseand An Allegheny Homecoming life will change irrevocably for all of them Inspired by theives of Choa Johnston's ancestors The House of Wives is an unforgettable novel about the machinations of the early opium trade and about two remarkable women determined to secure a dynasty for their children in the tumultuous British Crown colo.

As a playwright Simon was writer in residence at the Stratford Shakespeare Festival 2010 working on his new play Sisters that was selected for Factory Theatre’s Cross Currents Festival Simon has written plays for the Arts Club Theatre; Gateway Theatre Western Canada Theatre; Kaleidoscope Theatre; Youtheatre Montreal and the Lighthouse Festival Amongst his numerous awards are City of Richmond’