Li Lan lives in Malaya during the 19th century. Her mother died when she was young. She lives with her father, who is addicted to opium, in reduced circumstances. One evening, her father returns home and asks if she would like to become a ghost bride. Her bridegroom is the recently deceased son of a wealthy family. While contemplating this choice, Li Lan is visited by the ghost of her prospective bridegroom. He becomes increasingly insistent that she marry him. Li Lan travels to the afterlife to figure out why he continues to haunt her.
I read this book for my Historical Fiction class. I enjoyed the exploration of the afterlife in this book. It was a different focus for a historical fiction novel. I like to read mythology and explore cultural beliefs and how they influence history. This book embodied my interests in a fascinating way. It also made me want to read more about Chinese folk tales and ghosts.
The Ghost Bride has a complex plot, which is wonderfully executed. I liked the second half of the book the best, where Li Lan explores the afterlife. The use of myth and history was combined beautifully to me. I recommend reading this book.