In Hong Kong, just before her marriage to John Drayton, Lexine has a night of passion with an American officer that results in the birth of a baby boy. Lexine allows her husband to believe the child is his, and they bring him up together until World War II erupts. In their desperate attempt to escape the Japanese, Lexine and her family are shipwrecked and Lexine believes herself to be the only survivor. As the war heightens and tensions rise, Lexine once again encounters the America officer, and suddenly her past returns to haunt her.
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Joy Chambers is the author of several historical novels, including Mayfield; My Zulu, Myself; and Vale Valhalla.From Publishers Weekly:
This ambitious, complicated saga from Australian author Chambers explores love, loss and freedom against the backdrop of WWII in Southeast Asia. British doctor Lexi Robinson and her Australian soldier husband, John Drayton Whitby, cling to an old way of life in 1940s Hong Kong as the Japanese threaten to invade. Lexi's unexpected run-in with an American spy rekindles the passion they shared long ago; Lexi's childhood friend Kathleen discovers a devastating secret about her own past; and John begins to understand himself and his feelings. The dramatic depictions of war-torn locales are undermined by Chambers's clumsy handling of historically accurate racism (The Australian soldiers referred affectionately to their New Guinea native allies as Fuzzy Wuzzys because of their tight crimped curly hair), and her impressive research fails to rescue the story from lackluster characters and absurd twists of fate. (Oct.)
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