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Songs of Willow Frost

Twelve-year-old William Eng, a Chinese American boy, has lived at Sacred Heart Orphanage ever since his mother’s listless body was carried away from their small apartment five years ago. On his birthday—or rather, the day the nuns designate as his birthday—William and the other orphans are taken to the historical Moore Theatre, where William glimpses an actress on the silver screen who goes by the name of Willow Frost. Struck by her features, William is convinced that the movie star is his mother, Liu Song.

Set against the backdrop of Depression-era Seattle, Songs of Willow Frost is a powerful tale of two souls—a boy with dreams for his future and a woman escaping her haunted past.

Praise for Songs of Willow Frost

“Ford is a first-rate novelist whose bestselling debut, Hotel on the Corner of Bitter and Sweet, was a joy to read. With his new book, he takes a great leap forward and demonstrates the uncanny ability to move me to tears. ”

Pat Conroy
author of South of Broad

“This is a tender, powerful, and deeply satisfying story about the universal quest for love, forgiveness, belonging, and family. If you liked Hotel on the Corner of Bitter and Sweet, you’re going to love Songs of Willow Frost. ”

Lisa Genova
author of Still Alice

“I could not turn away from the haunting story or the stunning historical details that bring Depression-era Seattle to cinematic life. Ford’s boundless compassion for the human spirit, in all its strengths and weaknesses, makes him one of our most unique and compelling storytellers. ”

Helen Simonson
author of Major Pettigrew’s Last Stand

“A beautiful novel . . . William’s journey is one you’ll savor, and then think about long after the book is closed. I loved it.”

Susan Wiggs
author of The Apple Orchard

“One of those rare books that move right into your heart and stay there. Ford’s new—and long-awaited—book is a delight to read, and is destined to become a book-club favorite. ”

Anne Fortier
author of Juliet

“Ford has done it again, creating characters so full of passion and courage that we cannot help but follow them into the pages of history.”

Jean Kwok
author of Girl in Translation

“Ford weaves another rich tapestry of history and family drama in this cliff-hanging tale of an abandoned boy and the Chinese American singer he is convinced is his missing mother. Hope and fate, laughs and tears: Songs of Willow Frost has it all. ”

Ivan Doig
author of The Bartender’s Tale

“An engrossing saga… Ford has done it again.”

Patricia Wood
author of Lottery