Daughter of Fortune by Isabel Allende is a sweeping portrait of an era, a story rich in character, history, violence, and compassion. It’s also a story of bravery and passion and of a young woman's incredible journey from innocence to wisdom. Allende’s canvas encompasses 19th Century Chile and California during the 1849 Gold Rush. Her courageous story compels us to look beyond the boundaries imposed on us by others and by ourselves. And it teaches us that by opening our minds - and our hearts - we are opening ourselves up to golden opportunities for love, happiness and good fortune.
We had an interesting discussion about the restrictions society places on Hispanic and Asian women. Several members of the group had had first-hand experience of different cultures and norms. The overall theme of reinventing oneself and taking control of our lives provided a wonderful basis for very interesting conversation.
For further reading, Isabel Allende has written two other books that should prove interesting to those who enjoyed Daughter of Fortune. They are: Portrait in Sepia and The House of the Spirits.