Nineteen-year-old Na has always lived in the shadow of her younger brother, Bao-bao, her parents' cherished son. Years ago, Na's parents left her in the countryside and went to work in the city, bringing Bao-bao along and committing everything to his education.
But when Bao-bao dies suddenly, Na realizes how little she knew him. Did he really kill himself because of a low score on China's all-important college entrance exam? Na learns that Bao-bao had many secrets and that his death may not be what it seems. Na's parents expect her to quit her vocational school and go to work, forcing Na to confront traditional expectations for and pressures on young women.
Jennie Liu is the daughter of Chinese immigrants. Having been brought up with an ear to two cultures, she has been fascinated by the attitudes, social policies, and changes in China each time she visits. She lives in Western North Carolina with her husband and two boys.
Full of suspense and honesty, Like Spilled Water is an illuminating and heartrending examination of cultural norms, gender roles, and the complexity of family relationships in China today. Jennie Liu has crafted an unforgettable story of about the transformative power of forging one’s own path in the face of so many barriers—I promise you’ll be thinking about this book long after you’ve finished.
Will lead readers through a quiet revolution.
Young adult readers from a variety of backgrounds and life situations will connect with Na, a nuanced and complex character whose internal conflict will resonate with them.