Title: Song of the Silk Road
Author: Mingmei Yip
Pages: EBook (317)
Summary: As a girl growing up in Hong Kong, Lily Lin was captivated by photographs of the desert - its long, lonely vistas and shifting sand dunes. Now living in New York, Lily is struggling to finish her graduate degree when she receives an astonishing offer. An aunt she never knew existed will pay Lily a huge sum to travel across China's desolate Taklamakan Desert - and carry out a series of tasks along the way. Intrigued, Lily accepts. Her assignments range from the dangerous to the bizarre. Lily must seduce a monk. She must scrape a piece of clay from the famous Terracotta Warriors, and climb the Mountains of Heaven to gather a rare herb. At Xian, her first stop, Lily meets Alex, a young American with whom she forms a powerful connection. And soon, she faces revelations that will redefine her past, her destiny, and the shocking truth behind her aunt's motivations...Powerful and eloquent, "Song of the Silk Road" is a captivating story of self-discovery, resonant with the mysteries of its haunting, exotic landscape.
My Rating: 8.75/10
What I liked/disliked about the book: For the most part, I highly enjoyed this book and at times I was captured by Lily's journey down the Silk Road, but there were a few aspect of the book, that I didn't enjoy and I think had a huge impact on how I finally felt about the story. Overall it was a fantastic book, but there were a few element, that prevented it from being a phenomenal read.
I absolutely loved how the author explored Lily's journey down the Silk Road, paying attention to details such as cultural historical and spirituality throughout the book. I was very interested in this side of the story, and had trouble tearing myself away. The historical background and significance of some of the things mentioned and viewed throughout the book were fascinating to me, and they were showed to the reader in a very interesting way. I also enjoyed the part of the story with Lop Nor - I felt the relationship and development between him and Lily was very well done, and seemed to flow naturally, as opposed to other relationships, and I found Lop Nor to be one of my favourite characters.
I enjoyed the overall theme to the book, of finding one self, it was tied in quite well with the journey along the Silk Road, and how it changed Lily. I found a few plot developments and twists to be a little to convenient, others I didn't feel really needed to be there, but on the other hand, there were some plot revelations that were finally explained. A few things which I had questioned earlier finally made sense in the end. So there was a bit of a mix in how the story unfolded and progressed, but for the most part, I highly enjoyed it.
One of the major issues I had with the book was the relationship between Lily and Alex. In fact there were times this relationship nearly ruined the book for me. I didn't think the relationship fit into the book at all, and honestly felt it was a waste of writing space, that could have been better used to develop Lily's character even more. I found her other relationships she had were also poorly done as they also didn't seem to tie into the natural flow of the story, but hers and Alex's just didn't do it for me. I didn't see the connection or emotion between the two characters. The fact I couldn't not stand Alex (or Chris, the other major relationship Lily has) didn't help. I honestly wanted Alex to die in the book, just so the story could go back on track again. Luckily for me, I was able to force myself on, because the rest of the book, was an incredible read.
Would I recommend it to read: I would, this was a very enjoyable read, filled with interesting cultural elements of China, which I found fascinating. The book also has good amount of romance and finding one's self tied into it too, so there is something in here for multiple reader tastes.
What to read next: A Thread of Sky
Challenges: 12 in 12, 100+ Challenge, Alphabet Challenge, EBook Challenge, Global Reading Challenge,