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The Joy Luck Club by Amy Tan

The Joy Luck Club (original 1989; edition 2006)

by Amy Tan

MembersReviewsPopularityAverage ratingMentions
13,014143175 (3.87)252
Title:The Joy Luck Club
Authors:Amy Tan
Info:Penguin Books (2006), Paperback, 288 pages
Collections:Read but unowned
Tags:china, historical fiction, united states

Work details

The Joy Luck Club by Amy Tan (Author) (1989)

  1. 31
    Wild Swans: Three Daughters of China by Jung Chang (Jennie_103)
    Jennie_103: Another story of generations of chinese women.
  2. 00
    Fifth Chinese Daughter by Jade Snow Wong (Imprinted)
  3. 00
    Sweet Mandarin: The Courageous True Story of Three Generations of Chinese Women and Their Journey from East to West by Helen Tse (elbakerone)
  4. 00
    Krik? Krak! by Edwidge Danticat (Othemts)
    Othemts: In a superficial way this book reminds me of the stories of Amy Tan in that they show the strains of relationships between mothers and daughters, immigrants and American-born.

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» See also 252 mentions

English (133)  Dutch (4)  Catalan (3)  French (1)  Spanish (1)  All languages (142)
Showing 1-5 of 133 (next | show all)
Really beautifully written, the voices were clearly different. It was just hard to remember who was who- the guide at the beginning of the novel was a great reference. ( )
  srhlvn7 | Jul 5, 2016 |
I typically don't do well with books with a major cultural barrier "Things Fall Apart" created that precedent long ago. With that in mind, I had few expectations for this novel, a requirement for my current English class. I was pleasantly surprised, however.

This novel drew me- in not from the very start, but nonetheless until the very end. The intertwining plotlines were magnificently written, and the entirety kept an understandable balance of Chinese and American ways. Reading "The Joy Luck Club" was an unexpectedly eye opening experience. ( )
  sippju01 | Jun 9, 2016 |
5***** and a

This was the first Amy Tan book I read and I have been a fan every since. While there is a cultural divide to Tan's writing - the Asian experience and history, even Chinese sayings - there is a universality to the way she describes the mother/daughter relationship. The early dependence, the years of bickering to develop independence, the slow realization of your mother's truth, the final respect for your mother's background, her struggles, how she came to be your mother and always will be. ( )
  BookConcierge | Feb 19, 2016 |
A strange book, showing the lives of four Chinese families with individual portraits of the mothers and daughters. Sixteen chapters, four sections interleaved - so rather confusing at first. It's interesting at times, about Chinese life and adapting to American culture, and there's some sadness. Yet I couldn't get emotionally involved - it was almost like linked short stories, rather than a novel. Pleasant enough, but nothing special. ( )
  SueinCyprus | Jan 26, 2016 |
A beautiful, fascinating book about mothers and daughters ( )
  SabinaE | Jan 23, 2016 |
Showing 1-5 of 133 (next | show all)
In Tan's hands, these linked stories - diverse as they are - fit almost magically into a powerfully coherent novel, whose winning combination of ingredients - immigrant experience, mother-daughter ties, Pacific Rim culture - make it a book with the ``good luck'' to be in the right place at the right time.
In the hands of a less talented writer such thematic material might easily have become overly didactic, and the characters might have seemed like cutouts from a Chinese-American knockoff of ''Roots.'' But in the hands of Amy Tan, who has a wonderful eye for what is telling, a fine ear for dialogue, a deep empathy for her subject matter and a guilelessly straightforward way of writing, they sing with a rare fidelity and beauty. She has written a jewel of a book.

» Add other authors (21 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Tan, AmyAuthorprimary authorall editionsconfirmed
Alfsen, MereteTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Holt, Heleen tenTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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To my mother and the memory of her mother. You asked me once what I would remember. This, and much more.
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The old woman remembered a swan she had bought many years ago in Shanghai for a foolish sum.
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Amazon.com Amazon.com Review (ISBN 0143038095, Paperback)

Four mothers, four daughters, four families whose histories shift with the four winds depending on who's "saying" the stories. In 1949 four Chinese women, recent immigrants to San Francisco, begin meeting to eat dim sum, play mahjong, and talk. United in shared unspeakable loss and hope, they call themselves the Joy Luck Club. Rather than sink into tragedy, they choose to gather to raise their spirits and money. "To despair was to wish back for something already lost. Or to prolong what was already unbearable." Forty years later the stories and history continue.

With wit and sensitivity, Amy Tan examines the sometimes painful, often tender, and always deep connection between mothers and daughters. As each woman reveals her secrets, trying to unravel the truth about her life, the strings become more tangled, more entwined. Mothers boast or despair over daughters, and daughters roll their eyes even as they feel the inextricable tightening of their matriarchal ties. Tan is an astute storyteller, enticing readers to immerse themselves into these lives of complexity and mystery.

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:13:48 -0400)

(see all 7 descriptions)

In 1949, four Chinese women--drawn together by the shadow of their past--begin meeting in San Francisco to play mah jong, invest in stocks and "say" stories. They call their gathering the Joy Luck Club--and forge a relationship that binds them for more than three decades.… (more)

(summary from another edition)

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