A young man reluctantly takes over the family business (a shoe factory in China) and discovers the corruption and exploitation inherent in the system there. In the midst of coming to terms with all of that, Alex meets a seamstress named Ivy and they become close. But Ivy has an ulterior motive and while it aligns with some of Alex's sympathies, he's been manipulated and knows it.
Beautiful writing and a plot that pulls you in and won't let go!
The Emperor of Shoes by Spencer Wise ($26.99*, Hanover Square Press), recommended by Page 158 Books, Wake Forest, NC.