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Set in 19th-century North Adams, Massachusetts, the Celestials is a mesmerizing look at one intriguing period of American history. In June of 1870, seventy-five Chinese laborers arrive to work for Calvin Sampson, one of the biggest industrialists in the busy factory town. Combining history and fiction, author Shepard beautifully re-imagines the story of Sampson's "Chinese experiment" and the effect of the newcomers threatening and exotic presence on the New England locals. "Every page held me rapt, and I'm still marveling at the craft and the compassion of this exquisite novel." --Karen Russell, Author of "Swamplandia" and "Vampires in the Lemon Grove".