DAUGHTER OF JOY: A Novel of Gold Rush California.

Levy, JoAnn.

ISBN 10: 0312865023 / ISBN 13: 9780312865023
Published by New York: TOR / Tom Doherty Associates, (1998) dj, 1998
Hardcover
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SIGNED hardcover first edition - First printing. Based on the life of Ah Toy, a young woman who gained wealth and fame in gold rush San Francisco, and who was the first Asian woman to 'go to law' to use the American judicial system against injustice. SIGNED on the half title page. Historical afterword. 320 pp. Fine in fine dust jacket. Bookseller Inventory # 63598

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Bibliographic Details

Title: DAUGHTER OF JOY: A Novel of Gold Rush ...

Publisher: New York: TOR / Tom Doherty Associates, (1998) dj

Publication Date: 1998

Binding: Hardcover

Dust Jacket Condition: Dust Jacket Included

Signed: Signed by Author(s)

Edition: 1st Edition

About this title

Synopsis:

To celebrate the 150th anniversary of California's gold discovery, this novel in Forge's Women of the West series is based on the life of Ah Toy. A young Chinese woman who achieved wealth and fame in gold rush San Francisco, Ah Toy was the first Asian woman in America to "go to law," to employ the American judicial system to redress injustice.To her real-life adversary, Norman As-sing, chief of the Chinese in California, Ah Toy's flaunted independence is an affront. To Ah Toy, the merchant's assumed power and position is ridiculous. Their clash is inevitable and the stakes are high: power for him or independence for her. He brings to the battle wealth and influence. She brings youth, beauty, and courage.Their conflict is played out amid incomparably dramatic events: San Francisco's several disastrous fires, California's statehood celebration, a cholera epidemic, Vigilance Committee hangings, the rise of the tongs, a Chinese war in Weaverville.Ah Toy's story, set against this exciting backdrop of a turbulent era, is the immigrant's story, one of thousands unfolding as the world answered California's siren call of gold. For one young Chinese woman, the glittering promise is not just wealth but a new life in a new land--and a stirring new kind of freedom.

From the Author:

The story of Ah Toy and Norman As-sing is a work of fiction embedded in historical events. I am indebted to the California pioneers whose letters, diaries, and reminiscences provided both its inspiration and substantive details.Those whose accounts of California between the years 1850 and 1854 proved particularly valuable include J. D. Borthwick, for his description of a bull-and-bear fight; T.A. Barry and B. A. Patten, for their description of San Francisco, including Kearny street's sidewalks; Franklin Buck and John Carr, for the Weaverville War; and "Seven Years' Street Preaching in San Francisco" by Rev. William Taylor.I am grateful to the Bancroft Library for copies of Sophia Eastman's unpublished letters, which include an account of the City Hospital fire; and for those of John McCracken, a young lawyer whose letters to his family contained such wonderful details of gold rush San Francisco as the price and availability of cormorant eggs.To the California State Library in Sacramento I am particularly indebted for its unfailingly supportive staff, for copies of the Vigilance Committee minutes, and for the library's excellent collection of pioneer newspapers, which provided descriptions of the Chinese Bible distribution of August 1850, President Zachary Taylor's memorial parade, San Francisco's statehood and Independence Day celebrations, fires, court cases, shipping news, the "Sagamore" explosion, Ah Toy's court appearances, Tong Achick's letter to Governor Bigler, Norman As-sing's indictment for Triad activities in September 1854, and numerous lesser events.Also valuable was the library's collection of early city directories, including San Francisco's first, published by Charles P. Kimball, a duodecimo pamphlet of 136 pages containing 2,500 listings, including Norman As-sing and the Macau and Woosung Restaurant. Street names cited in this story are accurate for the 1850s. Some have changed. Dupont Gai today is Chinatown's famous Grant Avenue.Especially useful secondary sources included George R. Stewart's "Committee of Vigilance: Revolution in San Francisco, 1850"; Curt Gentry's "The Madams of San Francisco"; and Maxine Hong Kingston's "China Men."For Chinese beliefs and customs, I relied on J. Dyer Ball's "Things Chinese," Frena Bloomfield's "The Book of Chinese Beliefs," and Henry Dore's "Chinese Customs." Any failure to represent them accurately is genuinely regretted. This is the story of California's Chinese pioneers, and I hoped most sincerely to do both it, and them, justice.

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