Snow Flower and the Secret Fan

  • by Lisa See
  • Narrated by Jodi Long
  • 5 hrs and 1 mins
  • Abridged Audiobook

Publisher's Summary

Lily is haunted by memories of who she once was, and of a person, long gone, who defined her existence. She has nothing but time now, as she recounts the tale of Snow Flower and asks the gods for forgiveness.In 19th-century China, when wives and daughters were foot-bound and lived in almost total seclusion, the women in one remote Hunan county developed their own secret code for communication: nu shu ("women's writing"). Some girls were paired with laotongs, "old sames", in emotional matches that lasted throughout their lives. They painted letters on fans, embroidered messages on handkerchiefs, and composed stories, thereby reaching out of their isolation to share their hopes, dreams, and accomplishments.
With the arrival of a silk fan on which Snow Flower has composed for Lily a poem of introduction in nu shu, their friendship is sealed and they become "old sames" at the tender age of seven. As the years pass, through famine and rebellion, they reflect upon their arranged marriages, loneliness, and the joys and tragedies of motherhood. The two find solace, developing a bond that keeps their spirits alive. But when a misunderstanding arises, their lifelong friendship suddenly threatens to tear apart.
Snow Flower and the Secret Fan is a brilliantly realistic journey back to an era of Chinese history that is as deeply moving as it is sorrowful. With the period detail and deep resonance of Memoirs of a Geisha, this lyrical and emotionally charged novel delves into one of the most mysterious of human relationships: female friendship.


What the Critics Say

"Engrossing....Both a suspenseful and poignant story and an absorbing historical chronicle." (Publishers Weekly)


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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful

So so

As far as the story goes it provides an interesting glimpse into 19th century China and the customs of that time. However too much is told, not revealed, and some of the story feels undeveloped. The most negative aspect of the book however was the narrator. Her style, her voice, her emoting: AWFUL.
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- Claire

Awesome Book

I absoluttely loved this book!! The narrator was very good, and I couldn't stop listening. Awesome book in my opinion.
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- Mary

Book Details

  • Release Date: 06-24-2005
  • Publisher: Random House Audio