The Communist's Daughter
A NovelBook - 2006
Award-winning writer Dennis Bock returns with an unforgettable novel about a man whose life has touched millions. In The Communist's Daughter, the legendary Canadian doctor Norman Bethune--visionary, radical, martyr--comes vividly to life. Amidst the death and chaos of the Japanese army's advance into the northern hills of China, Bethune composes a wrenching letter to his daughter, a small child he has never seen. Her mother, the mysterious Swede named Kajsa he abandoned in war-torn Spain, haunts him. Now, faced with imminent death, the only trained doctor in 100,000 square miles, Bethune must confront the sum of his life.
Set against the tumult of the late 1930s, when ideologies clashed in Spain and China and the world stood poised for global conflict, The Communist's Daughter is a remarkable depiction of the moral ambiguities of war, political idealism and personal responsibility. Bock's Bethune is a man of fierce conviction and intense, often unreasoning, loyalty; yet, in the end, will he summon the courage to confess to his daughter the true reason he left her to come to the heart of this life-and-death struggle in the hills of China?
This is storytelling at its best--an elegant, passionate novel that unfolds against the sweep of history as the world, once again, turns towards war.