Published by Flatiron Books on February 12th 2019
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The Night Tiger has a little bit of something for everyone! Fans of this Author’s debut book, The Ghost Bride will love this sweeping tale set in Malaya (Malaysia) in the 1930’s. There is a lot going on in this book that I am only going to give a brief synopsis of the main characters.
Ren is an 11-year-old boy on a mission to locate his former masters missing finger so that he can bury it with his body. He has 49 days to do so for his master to be a rest. If he fails to find the missing finger, his master will be doomed to roam the earth forever.
Ji Lin is a young woman who works as an apprentice to a dressmaker. She is intelligent and had dreams of going into medicine, but being born a female at this time, she must do as her stepfather wishes. While learning to make dresses, she moonlights as a dance hall girl to pay off her mother’s Mahjong debts. One night she dances with a man and takes a small container from his pocket – in it, a finger! She begins a quest to find out just why this man had this in his pocket and where it came from.
The Night tiger uses history, Chinese superstition, folklore and mysticism. This book is an intricately woven tale of two characters as they grown and evolve on a collision course to learn the truth. Choo utilizes many themes: the class system of servant and master, sibling rivalry, domestic abuse, the afterlife, superstition, romance, coming of age, and even were-tigers.
This book is full of beautifully written passages, vivid descriptions and imagery. This book has a mystery which unites all the characters. It was easy to be sucked into the world that Choo has created. This book is as lush as the Malaysian jungle. I felt as if I experienced this book rather than read it. This book is atmospheric, captivating and intriguing. Yangsze Choo has a creative mind and a gift for writing intricate plots. The result is a beautiful journey into 1930’s Malaya utilizing mystical elements and superstition.
Mark your calendars and be on the lookout next year when this book comes out!
Thank you to Yangsze Choo and Flat Iron books who provided me with a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review. The thoughts and opinions expressed in this review are my own.