Eh - probably should have done this the first time around...
Whetting your appetites for those two reviews I mentioned -
http://www.asianreporter.com/paper/2005-39-Sept%2027-pp11-20.pdf (we're on Page 7) says: " 'The Secrets of Jin Shei' is a staggering achievement.... [at the story's close] Tai remembers the sisters of her heart and marvels, 'Oh, how rich my life was, with all of you beside me.' Readers' lives, too, will be richer for reading 'The Secrets of Jin Shei'."
And at http://www.rambles.net/alexander_jin04.html there's this: " 'The Secrets of Jin SHei' is an elegant, dreamlike epic set in a China-inspired fantasy world. A deeply female, deeply human story..... No recounting of the plot could do [Alexander's work] justice. 'The Secrets of Jin Shei' isn't a straightforward, linear story, but an interweaving of lives to form a single picture. The only way to really appreciate the effort, toil and beauty of it all is to join the sisterhood yourself."
My grateful thanks to reviewers Josephine Bridges and Sarah Meador.