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Reclaiming Lily
  • Author: Patti Lacy
  • Updated April 12, 2011

            Reclaiming Lily (Here's my work in progress, folks.)  

 

The charmed life of Kai Wang, born under the sign of Golden Dragon, disintegrates when her parents are seized during China’s Cultural Revolution. Eldest sister scratches and claws to feed her younger sisters and protect them from the stones—and nasty slurs—hurled by former friends. By 1980, the government rescinds orders of persecution and releases the disgraced intellectuals to the care of their daughters, who battle to yank their beloved Mother and Father from the precipice of sanity.  

 

Now that their rice bowls are full, the Wang daughters reenter the school yard, determined to save face. Soon the outhouse walls are papered with Wang scholastic achievements, especially Kai’s. Then Mother’s unexpected pregnancy rips open healing wounds: doctors hell bent on enforcing the new one-child policy will force abortion procedures on expecting mothers. Though Father insists that she comply, Mrs. Wang refuses. Quarrels threaten to shred tenuous family peace until a compromise is reached. The infant will be taken to a “social welfare home” until a Wang daughter is in the position to reclaim Lily. The plan is implemented when the sisters leave six-month-old Lily on the orphanage steps.  

 

An anguished Kai buries herself in her schoolbooks, tests into the top echelon of young scholars, and earns a slot at the country’s number two science university. Guilt and heartache are assuaged as she finagles a caretaker position at the home on weekends and evenings. Her heart leaps at the chance to lavish attention on all the orphans…especially the one with Father’s smooth brow, Mother’s pale skin. If the wind of fate continues to blow her way, she will complete her medical studies, find a suitable husband, and reclaim Lily. Thanks to Kai, the Wangs will save face…and find happiness. 

 

In 1991, a shift in government policy causes China to fling open its doors to the West and allow Andrew and Gloria Brown, an American pastor and his wife, to adopt Lily, whom they rename Joy. The news crushes the Wangs, particularly Mother, who refuses to eat and takes to her bed.  

 

As Kai watches her mother’s health deteriorate, she alters her education plan—not in scope, but location. Kai will pass through the ivy-covered gates of Harvard, “the universe’s greatest university,” but with quite different motives than those listed on her student visa. Kai’s twenty-five-year-old shoulders bear huge burdens: she has vowed to reclaim Lily, gain the medical knowledge that will save her mother, reunite her family, and bring luck and good fortune to the Wangs.         

Reclaiming Lily contrasts Christian and secular notions of sacrifice, compares cultural versus adoptive ties, and explores the tension between God’s ordained plan and the dream of the individual. As in her previous three novels, Patti intertwines music within the text, particularly Chinese folk songs and classical piano compositions.  


BOOKS
An Irishwoman's Tale
Author Patti Lacy
Published by Kregel Publications 2008
Two women, a impetuous Irishwoman and a gregarious Southerner, head back to the rocky cliffs of County Clare in a quest for healing.
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What the Bayou Saw
Author Patti Lacy
Published by Kregel Publications 2009
Sally Flowers, a middle-aged college instructor, grapples with sexual dysfunction, disturbing flashbacks, and past betrayals--including one of her own making--as she tries to help her student.
   » read more
The Rhythm of Secrets
Author Patti Lacy
Published by Kregel Publications 2010
Sheila Franklin loves a son she never knew and a husband who doesn’t know her. Then a young soldier comes knocking on her door and threatens to expose her deceptive ways. My Name is Sheba is my just-finished work in progress!
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Reclaiming Lily
Author Patti Lacy
Kai Wang, a Harvard-educated physician, battles an American pastor and his wife Gloria for custody of Lily, the sister wrenched from the Wang family during China’s Cultural Revolution.
   » read more
Jessie's Pearls
Author Patti Lacy/Sara Richardson
Published by Amazon 2014
A sharecropper's daughter claws at the constraints of poverty brought on by The Great Depression and World War II. Her secret? A jersey cow named Pearl and a aspirations higher than the Louisiana sky. Suddenly her possibilities seem limitless...but the tumultuous 60s cause her world to start crashing down.
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Tattooed by Jesus
Author Bonnie Kae Lentz, Patti Lacy, Angie Reedy
Published by Amazon 2015
West-side Bloomington wild child Bonnie Kae Lentz knew Jesus only as a cuss word until He pulled her out of substance abuse and witchcraft. The girl who longed to be the next Janis Joplin gave up the bright lights of L.A. and settled in with her husband on a stage in a street-front church in her home town.
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