Rated of 5
Shanghai Girls has alot of potential, but doesn't quite reach the mark.
Set in the 'Paris of Asia' and then in China Town LA, it presents compelling people and places. Character development is rounded for the two main characters, although not particularly for anyone else. The descriptions of Shanghai are vivid, and the way Lisa See describes the rape scene is truly harrowing. It is also obvious that much research has been put in. It's downfall is its lack of description through-out the book. It gets bogged-down midway by too much politics, although to some extent this is inevitable, it is still a shame the book isn't written in the same beauty as Peony In Love.
In conclusion, this was a great, emotive, and original book, although you may have to push yourself to read on halfway through.