As the Earth Turns Silver: A Novel

Author(s): Alison Wong

New Zealand Literature

Winner of the New Zealand Post Book Awards Fiction category. Alison Wong's outstanding first novel is set in Wellington in the early twentieth century and spans the years 1905 to 1922. The area known as Haining Street has an infamous reputation in the city, allegedly full of opium dens, weird food, gambling and strange Chinese cultural practices. Nice Europeans stay away. But for the tiny number of Wellington Chinese, it is a safe haven, a refuge from the scarcely believable and often violent anti-Chinese racism which pervades the wider Wellington community. This is the setting for an unlikely love story. Katherine is a lonely European widow struggling to support her children. Yung is a young Chinese man who runs a vegetable shop. We also learn he has a wife back in China. At first tentative, their love affair is conducted in secret, away from the daylight. Later, they grow in confidence. But in this climate how can a European woman have a successful relationship with a Chinese man? When her hostile son discovers what is happening, a tragic outcome seems the only possibility.


Product Information

Winner of New Zealand Post Book Awards: Fiction 2010. Shortlisted for PANZ Book Design Awards: Best Cover 2010 and Nielsen BookData New Zealand Booksellers' Choice Award 2010.

As the Earth Turns Silver has been a decade in the making for author Alison Wong, who is a New Zealand-born Chinese and a Wellington poet and fiction writer. Alison's poetry has been widely published, including in book form, and she was the Burns Fellow at the University of Otago in 2002. She has also spent several years living in China.

General Fields

  • : 9780143011675
  • : Penguin Group (NZ)
  • : Penguin Books (NZ)
  • : May 2009
  • : 230mm X 152mm
  • : New Zealand
  • : books

Special Fields

  • : Alison Wong
  • : Paperback
  • : 1st Edition
  • : Very Good
  • : 288