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Golden Parasol: A Daughter’s Memoir of Burma

Wendy Law-Yone

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Published by Chatto & Windus, part of Vintage Publishing

Format: Hardback

£17.99

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Details

EAN: 9780701186111
Published: 13 Jun 2013

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About the book

Synopsis

At the time of Burma’s military coup in 1962, Wendy Law-Yone was fifteen. A year later, her father Ed Law-Yone, daredevil proprietor of The Nation newspaper, was arrested and his newspaper shut down. Eventually,
Wendy was herself briefly imprisoned before managing to escape the country.

Ed would spend five years as a political prisoner. But from the moment he was freed he set about forming a government-in-exile in neighbouring Thailand. There he tried, unsuccessfully, to stage a revolution. Yet even after emigrating to America, he never gave up hope for the restoration of democracy in Burma. He died disappointed – but not before placing in his daughter’s hands an extraordinary bequest.

Ed had asked Wendy for help in editing his papers, but year after year she avoided the daunting task. When at last she found the confidence to take up the neglected manuscript, she discovered a captivating saga. Here was the forceful testimony of an ambitious, audacious, idiosyncratic and above all determined patriot whose career had spanned Burma under colonial rule, under Japanese occupation, through the turbulence of the post-war years, and into the catastrophe of a military dictatorship.

The result of this discovery is Golden Parasol: a unique portrait of Burma, a nation whose vicissitudes continue to intrigue the world. It is also a powerfully evocative family memoir: a daughter’s journey of reconciliation that illuminates the twin histories of country and kin.

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What the critics say

An always endearing book
- Literary Review

About the Author

Wendy Law-Yone was born in Mandalay, Burma, and grew up in Rangoon before fleeing the country at the age of twenty. In America, where she settled for the next three decades, she published two novels, The Coffin Tree and Irrawaddy Tango. A David T.K. Wong creative writing fellowship at the University of East Anglia brought her to the UK in 2002, and she has stayed here ever since. Her third novel, The Road to Wanting, was longlisted for the Orange Prize. She lives in London with her husband.

Wendy Law-Yone

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