A family saga set in China during the most tumultuous time of the twentieth century including the Japanese invasion, the civil war, and the Communist takeover.
THE HOUSE FILLER is told through the experiences of Golden Phoenix, a woman who faces war, poverty, and political oppression as she fights for survival, freedom and happiness. After the untimely death of her husband, Golden Phoenix is determined to keep her family together. However, poverty forces her to make the heart-wrenching decision to give her teenage twins to the Red Army.
During the upheaval of the Japanese invasion of her hometown, she is separated from her two young girls, and her remaining son leaves to fight with the Nationalist army. Golden Phoenix, along with her adopted son, remains to endure the horror and hardship of war. When the civil war ends with the Communists in power in 1949, one of her twins, who had joined the Communist Party, is wrongly accused of being a traitor and is sentenced to death. Golden Phoenix and her family must find a way to save her son's life.
THE HOUSE FILLER is a moving and powerful portrayal of one family's struggle to survive in the face of an historical upheaval and political oppression.
Fiction. History. Family & Relationships. Asian & Asian American Studies.
“THE HOUSE FILLER is an enduring historical tale of family, survival and resilience set against the backdrop of a turbulent and oppressive twentieth century China. A sharp, epic and deeply felt debut from an intriguing and vital new voice in Canadian literature. Tong Ge is a writer to watch.” —Ali Bryan, author of Coq and The Crow Valley Karaoke Championships
“In stunning, spare prose, Tong Ge gives us a richly woven historical family drama set against the backdrop of massive societal change. This atmospheric story is gorgeous and brutal and grips from the very first sentence. A haunting and fascinating look into a time and place uncommonly experienced in Canadian literature. A fascinating debut from a literary voice to watch.” —Bradley Somer, author of Fishbowl and Extinction
“Set against a tumultuous backdrop of war and revolution, Tong Ge’s THE HOUSE FILLER is a riveting, poignant and heartbreaking story of loss, love, family and resilience.” —David Starr, author of Like Joyful Tears
"A heart-rending story of strength and resilience and the power of true love." —Robin van Eck, author of Rough
Tong Ge was born and raised in China and moved to Canada in 1988. She began writing the China China trilogy in 2004. Although she was challenged by learning to write in English and by her long-term disability, she persevered and since 2012 has published poetry and prose in English and Chinese in publications such as Prism, Ricepaper, Flow, Canadian Stories, and The Polyglot. Tong Ge lives in Calgary, Alberta.