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DAUGHTERS OF THE DRAGON - A Comfort Woman's Story by Bill Andrews

Friday, August 8, 2014

DURING WORLD WAR II, the Japanese forced 200,000 young Korean women to be sex slaves or “comfort women” for their soldiers. This is one woman’s riveting story of strength, courage and promises kept. 

In 1943, the Japanese tear young Ja-hee and her sister from their peaceful family farm to be comfort women for the Imperial Army. Before they leave home, their mother gives them a magnificent antique comb with an ivory inlay of a two-headed dragon, saying it will protect them. The sisters suffer terribly at the hands of the Japanese, and by the end of the war, Ja-hee must flee while her sister lies dying. Ja-hee keeps her time as a comfort woman a secret while she struggles to rebuild her life. She meets a man in North Korea who shows her what true love is. But the communists take him away in the middle of the night, and she escapes to the South. There, she finally finds success as the country rebuilds after the Korean War. However when her terrible secret is revealed, she’s thrown into poverty. In the depths of despair, she’s tempted to sell the comb with the two-headed dragon that she believes has no magic for her. Then one day she discovers its true meaning and her surprising heredity. And now she must find the only person who can carry on the legacy of the two-headed dragon… someone she abandoned years ago. 

Set within the tumultuous backdrop of 20th century Korea, Daughters of the Dragon by Mayhaven Award-winning author William Andrews will make you cry and cheer for Ja-hee. And in the end, you’ll have a better understanding of the Land of the Morning Calm. 

Daughters of the Dragon is inspired by The Kite Runner, by Khaled Hosseini, Memiors of a Geisha by Arthur Golden, the books of Amy Tan and Lisa See.

Goodreads Summary

If you want to see a different side of World War II than what is usually presented in American textbooks, this is what you want to read. This book presents the story of the atrocities that happened when Japanese soldiers took Korean women as sex slaves during the war. Here we follow Ja-hee as she enters into the world of being a sex slave. We see the troubles that she faces as she tries to rebuild her life while serving the Japanese. 

I loved seeing another aspect of the war that is not talked about as much. It was not a pleasant thing to read about but still fascinating to see the atrocities that were committed on another front of the second world war. Ja-hee is a strong woman and the things that she had to face were horrible. Many much stronger people may have fallen in situations like this so it was good to see that her perseverance kept ringing true time after time. I felt horrible when she had to leave family members behind towards the end of the war to protect and preserve herself. The author does an amazing job at crisply painting a picture and making you truly see and feel what the characters are facing. For that alone this book is worth reading twice so that you don't miss anything.

5 Stars

*Reviewed by Chris* 

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