Blame it on Hawaii’s rainbows, sparkling beaches, fruity cocktails, and sensuous breezes. For Heather Diamond, there for a summer course on China, a sea change began when romance bloomed with Fred, an ethnomusicologist from Hong Kong. Returning to her teaching job in Texas, Heather wonders if the whirlwind affair was a moment of madness. She is, after all, forty-five years old, married, a mother and grandmother.
Rabbit in the Moon follows Heather and Fred’s relationship as well as Heather’s challenges with multiple mid-life reinventions. When Fred goes on sabbatical, Heather finds herself on the Hong Kong island of Cheung Chau with his large, boisterous family. For an independent, reserved American, adjusting to his extended family isn’t easy.
Life on Cheung Chau is overwhelming but also wondrous. Heather chronicles family celebrations, ancestor rituals, and a rich cycle of festivals like the Hungry Ghosts Festival, Chinese New Year, and the Bun Festival. Her descriptions of daily life and traditions are exquisite, seamlessly combining the insights of an ethnographer with the fascination of a curious newcomer who gradually transitions to part of the family.
Moving between Hawaii, Hong Kong, and the continental US, Rabbit in the Moon is an honest, finely crafted meditation on intercultural marriage, the importance of family, and finding the courage to follow your dreams.