The Ginger Tree

ginger tree cover image The Ginger Tree

Oswald Wynd
General Fiction
Harper Perennial Modern Classics, 2002
Paperback - 336 pages

We recently featured Jim Fergus’ One Thousand White Women in these pages. The parallels with The Ginger Tree are almost too close for comfort! Both books are set roughly at the turn of the last century. Both open with young women setting out on long journeys to wed husbands from vastly different cultures from their own. Both are constructed from fragments of letters and diaries in which these two women describe the lives which follow. Oddly enough, both were written by men! In The Ginger Tree, a young Scotswoman sets sail for Asia to join her betrothed. An adulterous affair with a Japanese nobleman ends that project and leaves her abandoned and alone for forty tumultuous years in China and Japan. A story every bit as gripping as that of May Dodd in One Thousand White Women.