A Heart for Freedom: The Remarkable Journey of a Young Dissident, Her Daring Escape, and Her Ongoing Quest to Bring Justice to China by Chai Ling
My rating: 4 of 5 stars
I had the privilege of receiving this book free from the publisher in exchange for reviewing it. However, my opinion is my own.
This book is an autobiographical work, telling of the author's childhood in China and her college years when she was involved in the Tiananmen Square protests. Following that, she came to America and made a new life for herself here. It's probably a spoiler to say that she comes to know Christ, but I think you'd know that from the marketing of the book or you might guess by just spotting the publisher's name.
I identified with the author of this book because she is only a few years younger than I am and she was raised in a home where intelligence and education was valued. But her life was very different from mine: at one point both her parents were away serving in the military and she was placed in a foster home for a time. She was also raised in a society where morals were not passed on to the young. This resulted in more than one unplanned pregnancy during her college years. She relates the experiences dispassionately and it is not clear until later how much choice she was given.
If you are interested in a comprehensive history of the Tiananmen Square incident, you will be disappointed. You might need a bit of background before reading this if you want to completely understand the politics behind the historical events. But if you want a glimpse into the Chinese culture and motivations of the students involved in the protests, then this is the book for you.
This is not a book for kids or younger teens, since the author treats the subject of sexuality and abortion with frankness. It is not explicit in any way, and I did not find it offensive, but it's really written for adults. It's also one that might stir up emotions of anyone who has had experience with abortion.
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