The Jade Rubies

February 16, 2012 by Will

Jade Ruby - A Novel by Valerie Lee
The Jade Rubies – A Novel by Valerie Lee

The Jade Rubies
A novel by Valerie Lee

Set in 1915, we are introduced to two sisters, Sulan and May. In a whirlwind fashion, the girls are torn away from their mother after being sold to a child broker and then to a wealthy couple who takes them on a life changing journey to the New World. Once settled into Vancouver with their master and mistress, the sisters fall into a routine of abuse at the hands of rich sadists and drug traffickers.

Valerie Lee shows us by way of sights and the imagery of scents that a deep mystery is set to unfold by the end of
the book. I found myself deeply invested in the kindly characters and equally critical of the villains.
I think she found her voice as a writer and used it well.

It is all too common for a reader to find themselves snuggled cozily in their home, under blankets within the safety of their predictable world. It is in such cases that the juxtaposition of a novel such as Valerie Lee’s The Jade Rubies truly shakes the reader. As I watched a tale of two innocent Chinese girls unfold, I became self-aware; knowing that I would never have to endure the trauma that these girls lived for 251 pages was both a relieving and guilt laden experience.

This isn’t the first time that I have experienced this particular set of emotions, as I am often drawn to stories concerning the multicultural plight of women.

The story survived beyond the printed word and is now emblazoned in my mind. Ever since I closed on the last page, I have not been able to get Sulan and her sister out of my head. What happened after that last page? I honestly would not mind a sequel!

Reviewed by Jennifer Harbourn who may be reached at

  • ISBN: 978-1-60402-300-8
  • 251 pages – Softbound
  • $17 tax & postage included
  • Available soon on Amazon Kindle (Order directly from
  • epub ISBN: 978-0-9826203-4-2

To order in paperback:

Or send check / money order to:
Inkling Press
PO Box 2598
Menlo Park, CA 94026-2598
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