Song Of The Silk Road

Song Of The Silk Road

3.14 (615 ratings by Goodreads)
By (author) 

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In this richly imaginative novel, Mingmei Yip--author of Peach Blossom Pavilion and Petals From the Sky--follows one woman's daunting journey along China's fabled Silk Road. 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.
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Product details

  • Paperback | 352 pages
  • 144 x 210 x 27mm | 348g
  • New York, United States
  • English
  • 0758241828
  • 9780758241825
  • 667,072

About Mingmei Yip

Mingmei Yip was born in China and received her Ph.D. from the University of Paris, Sorbonne. She has written for major Hong Kong newspapers, and has appeared on many national and international television and radio programs. She immigrated to the United States in 1992, where she now lives in New York City with her husband. Her novels have been published in ten different languages and she is also an accomplished musician and calligrapher. Visit her at
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Rating details

615 ratings
3.14 out of 5 stars
5 17% (106)
4 23% (142)
3 29% (180)
2 17% (106)
1 13% (81)

Our customer reviews

Lady Luck hasn't always smiled down on Lily Lin. At just 28, she has lost both of her parents and is working at a dead end job in a Chinese restaurant. But that all changes when a letter from a mysterious distant relative names her as the sole heiress of a 3 million dollar fortune. All she has to do is retrace the steps this relative took along the famed Silk Road and complete a series of tasks. So she packs up her life and leaves for an adventure that will bring her more fortune and heartbreak than she had ever imagined. Mingmei Yip weaves a story as intriguing as the Silk Road itself, filled with passion and self-discovery. The interesting story concept ties together the old ways of China with its bright future. Readers and history buffs alike will find themselves immersed in this captivating novel with rich cultural more
by TeensReadToo
Meet Lily Lin, an aspiring novelist currently working as a waitress at Shun Lee Palace in Manhattan. She lost both of her parents when she was 28 years old. Her lover Chris Adams is her former creative writing professor, and he is also married with a son. When she is 29, Lily receives a letter that she has a bequest of $3 million dollars from an aunt named Mindy Madison that she had never known existed, and dismisses it as a scam. When David Mann, an attorney at Mills and Mann Associates, contacts her directly, she pays a visit to the attorney offices, and finds out that in order to gain the money, she must first retrace and travel her aunt's route on the Silk Road in China - over 1,000 miles. She is given a period of 6-8 months to do so, and $50,000 as her "travelling money". She is also given a list of tasks to complete on the journey, including having sex with a specific monk in the "upside down lotus" position. Her only clue that it will be the correct monk is if he says a certain word when he climaxes. Journeying with Lily is a mixed bag; there are fascinating descriptions of Chinese traditions, folklore, remedies, and sites. I enjoyed meeting some of the people she met, including Keku, her young landlady in the village she eventually establishes as her home base. Lily meets a strangely persistent young American named Alex at her first stop, and rejects his offer to travel with her. As he continues to show up, eventually she relents and actually has a meal with him, which leads to a friendship and more. Lily's gift of "seeing" comes in handy in some of her adventures, and when she finally completes her mission, she meets her aunt in a most unlikely place, and finds out that there is more to her own family background than she ever knew. I initially looked to see if this novel was translated; the writing style was formal and somewhat stiff, as I would expect from many translations. I couldn't find anything stating that it was. I struggled with my reaction to this story. Much of the dialogue was overblown and includes some rather crass sexual talk and scenes. BUT .. at other times, during the descriptions of past (and some present) events and on hearing the background of Lily's family, I was totally caught up. I would go from eye-rolling at the dialogue to being submerged in another part of the story. All in all, I'm glad to have read it; I even learned some traditional Chinese remedies! Oh, and LOOK at the gorgeous cover (I'm superficial like that). I think this novel would work even better for a reader who is into steamy romance scenes . QUOTES (from an ARC; may be different in final version): He went on to tell me some amazing stunts of qigong masters. His grandfather would direct qi from his fingertips to extinguish five lit candles and send a row of people stumbling back without even touching them. Almost all older generation Chinese believe in yixing buxing - one shape boosting another similar one. Thus chicken feet are said to build dexterous finger, animals' bones your bone (especially menopausal women), pigs' kidneys to strengthen your kidneys, chicken heart, your heart . . . But more sand had come between his fiery desire and my deep, mysterious valley. Undeterred, he spit, then kissed again. Writing: 2.5 out of 5 stars Plot: 3.5 out of 5 stars Characters: 3 out of 5 stars Reading Immersion: 3 out 5 stars BOOK RATING: 3 out of 5 starsshow more
by Julie Smith
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