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Ernie Yap was born and spent his childhood in Malaysia. While in medical school in Canada, he wrote book reviews, short stories in medical humanities and literary non-fiction.
Story of Lee is his debut novel.
Jack Jue, Jr
on April 23, 2012 :
I just finished Ernie Yap's "Story of Lee". I have an ongoing blog about my family's history starting from my great grandfather who immigrated from China in the 19th century, and have spent alot of time researching Chinese American history. Yap's book is a fascinating and engaging novel that weaves fiction with historical fact creating a wonderful story of a Chinese American man in the 19th century and the beginning of the 20th century. The story is in a sense a prequel and homage to a fascinating character in American literature , the Chinese American domestic servant , "Lee", in Steinbeck's East of Eden. Like all great prequels, Ernie Yap's novel about Lee draws you right into his story and leaves you wanting to know what happens next. Yap's novel bookends Lee's life with the story of his life up until his time with the Trasks in Salinas and Lee's old age as an owner of his bookstore but leaves completely to Steinbeck the story of Lee's Salinas years. A reader of Yap's book, like myself, who has not yet read Steinbeck's East of Eden will be left desperately wanting to know what happens to Lee next and will be drawn immediately into Steinbeck's novel and Lee's role in the dramatic story of the Trask family.
Ernie Yap's novel is a fantastic debut work. I could not put it down and highly recommend it !
(reviewed 13 days after purchase)