A sober, intelligent autobiography by the Chinese actress who played the title role in The World of Suzie Wong, which ran in...

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DAUGHTER OF SHANGHAI

A sober, intelligent autobiography by the Chinese actress who played the title role in The World of Suzie Wong, which ran in London from 1959 to 1961. In her opening section, Chin focuses on her childhood in Shanghai, where she led a privileged life as the daughter of a highly regarded operatic actor. While she covers familiar territory with anecdotes and faithful servants and English-speaking schoolteachers, Chin also provides illuminating glimpses into the world of Chinese classical theater. No doubt her visits with her father backstage, coupled with her exposure to Western cinema, were largely responsible lot her decision to attend the Royal Academy of Dramatic Art in London. Chin went on to land a number of stage, screen, and TV roles; she also made records and worked as a cabaret singer. All the while, however, ""it was difficult to shed the label of being Suzie Wong."" Interestingly, events in China caused a complete transformation. During the Cultural Revolution of the late 1960's, Chin's parents were persecuted by members of the new political order, and Chin, after experiencing an emotional breakdown, was forced to rethink her career. In her closing section, she describes, sometimes movingly, how she lived through personal tragedy to arrive at professional maturity. In the end, Chin comes across as a strong woman and a serious actress--one who is able to recount tangled events with orderly prose.

Pub Date: Nov. 22, 1989

ISBN: N/A

Page Count: -

Publisher: St. Martin's

Review Posted Online: N/A

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Oct. 15, 1989