Book Review: How Much of These Hills is Gold by C Pam Zhang

Rating: 5 out of 5.

C Pam Zhang’s exceptional debut, How Much of These Hills is Gold, has to be one of my favorite reads of the year so for. If you haven’t read it already then I suggest you go and buy yourself a copy on the way home because this book is utterly stunning. For me this book was literary perfection so it’s no surprise to see it gracing the 2020 Booker Prize longlist.

This gritty story is one of sibling bonds, coming-of-age, the struggle for identity and the search for a home, all gathered into an extraordinary adventure tale and woven with local folklore. The book follows two young orphaned Chinese immigrants in post-Gold Rush America. Ostracised from society and with their mother already gone, hard-working Lucy and tomboyish Sam journey across the desolate landscape in search of a place to bury their father after his sudden death. Throughout the book Zhang opens windows into Lucy and Sam’s family history, revealing the traumas and moral conflicts experienced by their parents life during the Gold Rush as they chased the golden dream.

Home sounds like a fairy tale that Ma reads from a secret fourth book, written on the backs of her shut eyelids. Ma speaks of fruit that grows in the shape of stars. Green rocks harder and rarer than gold. She speaks the unpronounceable name of the mountain where she was born.

C Pam Zhang

The haunting atmosphere of this book as well as the beautiful way in which Zhang writes speech reminded me of Delia Owens’ bestseller, Where the Crawdads Sing. Though darker in tone and heavier in content, the wild setting and strong characters resonated with Owen’s soulful story which is set in the marshes of 60’s North Carolina.

I simply can’t recommend this book highly enough for lit-lovers, and am absolutely gutted that it hasn’t made it onto the Booker shortlist!

You can buy a copy from your local independent bookshop through Hive here!

Girl, Woman, Other by Bernadine Evaristo

Book Review: Girl, Woman, Other by Bernadine Evaristo

This wonderful novel spans generations and combines the power of 12 startling voices to share the experiences of British women of color. Mainly set in London we hear the story of a proud black lesbian playwright, her sassy super-feminist daughter and a sexually fluid millennial, just to name a couple.

Black History Month Reads

It’s Black History Month in the UK and I decided this year I should finally get round to reading some of those incredible stories that I haven’t quite made time for yet.

One Day by David Nicholls

Book Review: One Day by David Nicholls

I can definitely see why this books is a bit love it or hate it. The story of Dexter and Em is given to us in snapshots, Starting from their meeting at uni up to their late 30s, the book oozes sexual tension, but with an increasingly dark edge which reminded me of Sally Rooney’s novels.


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