Teenager Lily Hu is fully immersed in the life and culture of San Francisco’s Chinatown, home to Chinese immigrant families like hers. But as she comes of age in the 1950s, her passion for rockets and space exploration is matched by her curiosity about the Telegraph Club, located in a neighboring part of the city her parents have asked her to avoid.
Lily and her new friend, Kathleen, begin to sneak out at night to the club, which hosts performances by Tommy Andrews, a woman who dresses and performs in a traditionally masculine style. Kath and Lily’s interest in each other continues to grow despite the very real danger faced by two girls falling in love in 1954.
At the same time, McCarthy-era fears about Communism, coupled with ongoing anti-Asian hate, shake the stability of the Chinese community and threaten to engulf Lily’s own father.
Come to the Richmond Free Library for an interesting and informative community book discussion of the Vermont Reads book Last Night at the Telegraph Club facilitated by Jim Schley.