by Leta Tucker Hodge
About the Book
A stranger in a strange land — both in China and the United States — Leta Tucker Hodge has painted for us a small slice of shared experiences of wartime life as seen through her eyes using her unique and elegant voice.
Assigned to manage one of the British American Tobacco Company factories in Shanghai in the 1930s, Leta’s father, Jake Tucker pulled his family into the foreign society of Shanghai before the beginning of WWII. Life in China was a multicultural education that endeared the family to a vastly different way of life than their relatives back in the States. After the war began, the contrasts and difficulties encountered by the Tucker family also taught them to overcome the challenge and endure separation. Those days saw war, death, and destruction, not only of people and material things but of the whole culture into which the author was born. Wars and change overwhelmed it all. The society that prevailed was crushed and eventually gave way to Mao Tse Tung and his communist regime.
For most foreigners, Shanghai — the good and the bad — was viewed with unceasing fascination. Retrospection from the intelligent insight and maturity of emotion not often seen in youth, the author has mastered the art of memoir in this haunting, yet joyful literary showpiece.
About the Author
Leta May Tucker Hodge was born in 1934 in Tientsin, China. Her childhood years were spent in Shanghai and in La Cross and Chester, Virginia where she graduated from high school in 1952.
She attended Westhampton College, University of Richmond, graduating Phi Beta Kappa in 1956 with a B.A. degree.
After teaching high school for three years, she returned to the academic world, pursuing graduate study in history at the University of Virginia.
She moved to Missouri in 1961 and has written extensively on local history.