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Download What We Were Promised Audiobook

Extended Audio Sample What We Were Promised Audiobook, by Lucy Tan Click for printable size audiobook cover
0 out of 50 out of 50 out of 50 out of 50 out of 5 0.00 (0 ratings) (rate this audio book) Author: Lucy Tan Narrator: Jennifer Lim Publisher: Hachette Book Group Format: Unabridged Audiobook Delivery: Instant Download Audio Length: Release Date: July 10, 2018 ISBN: 9781478920908
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Set in modern Shanghai, a debut by a Chinese-American writer about a prodigal son whose unexpected return forces his newly wealthy family to confront painful secrets and unfulfilled promises.

After years of chasing the American dream, the Zhen family has moved back to China. Settling into a luxurious serviced apartment in Shanghai, Wei, Lina and their daughter, Karen, join an elite community of Chinese-born, Western-educated professionals who have returned to a radically transformed city. One morning, in the eighth tower of Lanson Suites, Lina discovers that a childhood keepsake, an ivory bracelet, has gone missing.

The incident contributes to a wave of unease that has begun to settle throughout the Zhen household. Wei, a marketing strategist, bows under the guilt of not having engaged in nobler work. Meanwhile, Lina, lonely in her new life of leisure, assumes the modern moniker tai tai—a housewife who does no housework at all. She spends her days haunted by the circumstances surrounding her arranged marriage to Wei and her lingering feelings for his brother, Qiang. Lina and Wei take pains to hide their anxieties, but their housekeeper, Sunny, a hardworking woman with secrets of her own, bears witness to their struggles. When Qiang reappears in Shanghai after decades on the run with a local gang, the family must finally come to terms with the past.

From a silk-producing village in rural China, up the corporate ladder in suburban America, and back again to the post-Maoist nouveau riche of modern Shanghai, What We Were Promised explores the question of what we owe to our country, our families and ourselves.

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Quotes & Awards

  • “I read What We Were Promised in a state of enchantment, immediately drawn into the longings, secrets, and very human foibles of its finely-drawn cast of characters. Both intimate and panoramic, Lucy Tan’s debut is…local and universal.”

    Chloe Benjamin, New York Times bestselling author

  • “Tan’s talent as a storyteller clearly shines through her strong plot lines and characterization; readers will want to know more about each well-crafted player in the story, rich or poor, young or old. Verdict: A novel of class, culture, and expectations; readers who enjoyed works like Kevin Kwan’s Crazy Rich Asians will likely find Tan’s surprising and down-to-earth tale an entertaining read.”

    Library Journal

  • “Abounding in insight and deftly told.”

    Maggie Shipstead, author of Seating Arrangements

  • A Huffington Post Pick of Books We Can't Wait to Read in 2018
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About the Author

Lucy Tan grew up in New Jersey and has spent much of her adult life in New York and Shanghai. She received her BA from New York University and her MFA from the University of Wisconsin–Madison, where she was awarded the 2016 August Derleth Prize. Her fiction has been published in journals such as Asia Literary Review and Ploughshares, where she was winner of the 2015 Emerging Writer’s Contest.

About the Narrator

Jennifer Lim is a voice talent and audiobook narrator.