Morning Sun in Wuhan by Ying Chang Compestine
Publisher: Clarion Books
Number of pages: 208
Publishing: November 8th, 2022
Source: Spark Press via NetGalley
Opening Line: "It feels as though hours have passed since the waitress took my order."
Mei lives with her father, the director of the respiratory care center in Wuhan, China. She has been grieving her mother since she died a year earlier, her nearest companions are a neighbor who checks on her from time to time, playing an online computer game and cooking. Her father has been pretty busy with his work, which makes Mei's aunt very angry with him. The story begins just as Covid hits the town of Wuhan and follows Mei as she navigates life in her city after the virus emerges. It takes place across a year's time span (From January 2020 to February 2021) and then jumps ahead a year to February 2021 with the celebration of the Chinese New Year.
There are moments in time when events happen that are so clear, vivid recollections of where you were and what was happening around you. Often, we hope for the happy memories, but too often it's the sadder moments that come to mind. I think most people will forever recall the early onset of Covid and what the country was living through at the time. Morning Sun in Wuhan is the authors way of reflecting on events that occurred at the onset of the pandemic in Wuhan, taken from conversations with friends, family and photos and videos made in the city, which were then pieced together to the tell the story of a young girl who provides comfort for her neighbors by preparing meals in a volunteer cooking shelter (which was an actual news story that the author also drew inspiration from). It's a story of community and a testament to all the front-line workers who worked tirelessly to help feed, heal and provide aid during moments of distress. Included within the chapters are recipes for the meals that Mei prepares and an author's note explaining her reasons for writing the book. Overall, this is a very interesting story that accurately depicts the events as they unfolded at the epicenter for Covid and brings the perspective of the individuals present when the virus broke. Hopefully the story will help combat some of the negative perceptions that were being made about Wuhan at the time and will also help develop empathy for what the city and its people had to endure. Written by an author originally from Wuhan this is an especially valuable first-hand account. **A huge thank you to Spark Press for the E-ARC via NetGalley**
We are just starting to see stories come out about our experiences during Covid. This sounds like a good one.
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