Shanghai Immortal: A richly told romantic fantasy novel set in Jazz Age Shanghai
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This novel along adventure is also filled with humor. Lady Jing’s character itself is funny. She tries to control her anger but still it causes her problems. Yan Luo Wang aka Big Wang, the king of hell is also funny and caring at the same time. I love his sarcastic side. There is a lot going on in Shanghai Immortal, not least the coming of age (which here is 100 - young for an immortal) or a spoiled, petulant brat who has certainly been bullied but has raised so many defenses that she doesn't even know she has friends. She is part of a grand prophecy, and the subject of much derision (often due to her own actions), so when she has to chaperone a human banker (there to set up a Central Bank Of Hell - this is 1930's Shanghai after all), she takes it on as the worst burden in the world. But as is the way in such romances, the barriers slowly thaw and she realises with his help that actual people are looking out for her, she does have friends and if she was just nice every now and then, she might make more.
Lady Jing of Mount Kunlun aka Grand Princess Overflowing with Sagacity aka Noble Lady Hu Xian Jing of the Turquoise Hills is born of a hulijing (fox spirit) mother and vampire father. Because of this, Jing is constantly bullied by her fellow fox relatives and shunned by the rest because she has to sustain on blood. Yes, even though she’s in Hell, the yaojing (demons) are wary of her. Of course, this has to do with her explosive temper which got her into hot waters multiple times, especially when it concerns the rest of the hulijing court.I want to thank Hodder & Stoughton and NetGalley for the opportunity to read this advanced copy in exchange for an honest review. 4/5'5 Shanghai Immortal is a gritty, glittering tale of gods and monsters in a reimagining of 1930s China. The fearsome half-vampire half-deity Lady Jing swaps anger management lessons for a crash course in the mortal realm and you can't help but root for her and the chaos she leaves in her wake. Full of fury, passion, and beauty, this is a debut that will grip you in its fangs and make you bleed-all the while wanting more." - Saara El-Arifi An absolutely delightful romp of a book. It's impossible not to be charmed by Lady Jing as she gets up to shenanigans in mortal and hell Shanghai. I was entranced from start to finish." - Judy I Lin
The plot was amazing! Always filled with adventures yet we still had time to drink tea--and other things--and eat xiao long bao. I personally need this balance because to me, this is what makes the story even more real. This book is incredible. The imagery is detailed without being tedious and repetitive, there is humor, and characters with depth. Wow. What a book. I know this doesn't release until June 6th, but this is such a perfect read both for AAPI month and for mental health awareness month. Lady Jing was such a good character. I didn't like her at all at first; I hated her, in fact. She was very childish and self-sabatoging. She had no control at all over herself and was verbally abusive to anyone who seemed to care about her even a little bit. But there's so much more to her than that.I had a lot of fun in reading this book; it's fast paced, well plotted and there a lot of humour. The world building is fascinating and Lady Jing is a character you cannot help loving.