This is a fascinating book. It takes place in San Francisco’s Chinatown during the 1870’s. It begins in August during a hellacious heat wave as well as a small pox epidemic. The story centers around three friends who have recently come to America from Paris. The story really beings when Blanche is nearly run over by a frog hunter named Jenny riding her bicycle in the dusky night. This chance encounter spurs a series of events which dramatically changes the relationships between the three Parisians as well as between Jenny and Blanche. Be warned : It is a bit risqué – but moving. It is by the same author as Room which came out about 3 years ago.