Wednesday, January 7, 2015
One trend I've noticed is the tendency for a writer to have his/her protagonist moving through space and time solo--not interacting with anyone. Not the person on the park bench next to him, not the man who has just stolen her suitcase, not the people in her workplace. There's almost this bubble of silence around the main character that might be filled with texts ("God, I got stuck next to the stinkiest old woman." Or "My boss screwed me again.")
Okay, so maybe this is not a new trend. New writers have always been hesitant to get their characters to talk much. That requires understanding the backstory, mood, goals of each character. So troublesome.
But human interaction is a mystery to us all--and one we want to read about. #Ditch the bubble of silence.
Saturday, December 13, 2014
As co-author of Blossoms and Bayonets—the story of the Japanese occupation of Korea during WWII—I spent several years researching this topic. These women don’t’ deserve to be raped yet again by having Yamamoto and the Abe Government revise history.
Yamamoto will hold a press conference. A protest will follow. If you are able please show up:
Saturday Dec 13, 2014
Press Conference 5:00 PM
Redwood City Community Center
1400 Roosevelt Ave. Redwood City, CA 94061
Sunday, November 23, 2014
I briefly heard an interview on NPR--so briefly that I didn't catch who was being interviewed. However, I did remember her words. When the interviewer asked, "Does censorship in your country make it difficult to speak your mind?" this author said, "There are two types of censorship. Those imposed by others and those that are self-imposed. I look at so many people today who, by their own choice, do not read books. Their worlds consist of Facebook notifications and Twitter posts. That self-censorship is just as bad."
I couldn't agree more.
So, this holiday season, don't censor your world. Read a book. And pass it on.
I'll be signing books at the Holiday Craft Faire up on Summit Road. It's a great time to pick up holiday gifts...and is right next to the Summit Christmas Tree Farm. Hope to see you there.
Wednesday, May 28, 2014
Oh my goodness. You know when a book brings you out of a reading rut? Wow. I was interested in the book when I heard about it but then I started it and man, I didn't want the story to end.
Thursday, May 22, 2014
Says OBS Reviewer: I don’t normally read books about war or violence in general, I believe life is hard enough as it is, but I am always open to new experiences and this one was definitely new: I know close to nothing about Korea, unless you count my watching the TV series M.A.S.H. (which I loved, by the way). So, I was very excited about the prospect of reading this book and I came out of the experience extremely happy..
Wednesday, May 14, 2014
The Japanese Occupation is a historic moment. I learnt about it when I was in primary school and my dad ocasionally talks about it during mealtimes.... It’s brutal and heartbreaking.
Monday, May 12, 2014
This was nothing short of an amazing story. Once I picked it up I couldn’t put it down... Reading this book was a truly humbling and eye opening experience. It was honest, angry, emotional, beautiful, tragic and encouraging all at once....
Check out today's tour courtesy of Miss Nose in a Book
What People Are Saying About My Half of the Sky
"McBurney-Lin tells a wonderfully entertaining story with the traditional coming-of-age theme (which is experienced universally)...weaving in the cultural challenges of growing up in China's rapidly changing social system."
Mary Warpeha, co-President of the Minnesota Chapter of US-China Friendship Association
"The novel ...includes many of the tales and the folk ways of the people living in the rural areas of South China, still followed provincially. The story takes place in current China, but could relate the dilemma of any young woman in rural China through the ages."
Kitty Trescott, National Board of the Midwest Region of US-China Friendship Association. March 2010
"A lot is expected of a young Chinese girl. My Half of the Sky by Jana McBurney-Lin is the story of Li Hui, a young girl who has just achieved marriageable age. She seeks to make the most of herself, but the expectations all around her make it difficult, as her parents seek to use her as pawn to their advantage, she is faced with what she believes to be true love. She must balance career, romance, and family, all to somehow make everyone happy, a tough endeavor indeed. An engaging and entertaining read from beginning to end, "My Half of the Sky" is a poignant tale of the modern Chinese woman, and recommended for community library collections.
--Midwest Book Review November, 2008
“It is a rare women’s novel that sensitively describes the life of a young educated woman in modern-day China in its full complexity, without resorting to unnecessary sentimentalism. Jana’s deep knowledge of the realities of life in China and Singapore makes the reading extra rewarding. In fact, with every new page the novel gets harder to put down and you find yourself gobbling it up before you know it. Finally, the author has given a voice to the Li Hui in all of us, as we struggle for the golden middle between tradition and the modern momentum of our world.”
Friends of the Museum Book Review 2008
You'll be rooting all the way for Li Hui as she struggles, ahead of the curve, to be her own woman in an emerging, modern China. Jana McBurney-Lin's My half of the Sky is a beautiful, witty, touching debut novel.
Thomas B. Sawyer
Head Writer TV Series "Murder, She Wrote,"
Author - The Sixteenth Man
A complex and mesmerizingly original tale of a young Chinese woman caught between the modern world and the pull of her ancient culture. McBurney-Lin’s intimate portrait of China sparks with insights and is peopled with characters so rich and alive, they seem to breathe on the page. Dazzling and unforgettable.
Caroline Leavitt, Author - Girls in Trouble
McBurney-Lin's debut novel is a gift. Li Hui is a memorable heroine, a young woman torn between her heart and her culture.Her daunting journey is a trip into China's complicated soul, and a deeply moving exploration of love, honor, duty, and loss." Frank Baldwin, Author - Balling the Jack
My Half of the Sky is a wonderfully-crafted story that was obviously written with a piece of McBurney-Lin's heart. A masterpiece."
Lee Lofland, Author - Howdunit: Police Procedure and Investigation
My Half of the Sky heralds the arrival of a fantastic new storyteller. With artistry and precision, Jana McBurney-Lin's clear-eyed prose takes the reader on a new journey into a past world that speaks to a modern sensibility, a modern world, a modern woman. This is a book to be treasured.
Emily Rapp, Author - The Poster Child
Through vivid descriptions of sights and smells, Jana McBurney-Lin's My Half of the Sky is a haunting, emotional journey of what it means to be an honorable female in modern China. Jill Ferguson, Author - Sometimes Art Can't Save You