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Butterfly's Child: A Novelby Angela Davis-Gardner
Synopses & Reviews
When three-year-old Benji is plucked from the security of his home in Nagasaki to live with his American father, Lt. Benjamin Franklin Pinkerton, and stepmother, Kate, on their farm in Illinois, the familyconceals Benji's true identity as a child born from a liaison between an officer and a geisha, and instead tells everyone that he is an orphan.
Frank struggles to keep the farm going whilecoping with his guilt and longing for the deceased Butterfly. Deeply devout Kate is torn between her Christian principles and her resentment of raising another woman's child. And Benji's life as anoutcast--neither fully American nor fully Japanese--forces him to forge an identity far from the life he has known.
When the truth about Benji surfaces, it will splinter thisfamily's fragile dynamic, sending repercussions spiraling through their close-knit rural community and sending Benji on the journey of a lifetime from Illinois to the Japanese settlements in Denver and SanFrancisco, then across the ocean to Nagasaki, where he will uncover the truth about his mother's tragic death.
A sweeping portrait of a changing American landscape at the end of the nineteenthcentury, and of a Japanese culture irrevocably altered by foreign influence, Butterfly's Child explores people in transition--from old worlds to new customs, heart's desiresto vivid realities--in an epic tale that plays out as both a conclusion to and an inspiration for one of the most famous love stories ever told.
From the Hardcover edition.
The author of Plum Wine imagines the story of Benji after the events in Puccini's Madame Butterfly and follows his upbringing by his father and stepmother in rural Illinois, where he encounters prejudice before being relegated to a Japanese settlement in San Francisco. 30,000 first printing.
About the Author
\Angela Davis-Gardner spent a year in Japan as a visiting professor at Tokyo’s Tsuda College, which inspired her acclaimed novel Plum Wine. She is also the author of Felice and Forms of Shelter. An Alumni Distinguished Professor Emerita at North Carolina State University, she lives in Raleigh.
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