Customer Reviews


33 Reviews
5 star:
 (17)
4 star:
 (9)
3 star:
 (5)
2 star:
 (2)
1 star:    (0)
 
 
 
 
 
Average Customer Review
Share your thoughts with other customers
Create your own review
 
 

The most helpful favourable review
The most helpful critical review


46 of 47 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Wonderful
The Joy Luck Club follows the lives of a group of Chinese women and daughters living in modern day San Francisco. Not unlike "How to Make an American Quilt" (not sure which came first) the book examines the difficult maternal relationships using flashbacks to various parts of the mother's lives. It is only once you know someone's history that you can understand why a...
Published on 14 Feb 2003 by K. Alley

versus
3.0 out of 5 stars joy luck club
I enjoyed the book although I found the shifting voices between chapters confusing. The links between the characters were not made strongly enough. It felt more like a collection of short stories.
Published 12 months ago by Sue Lyle


‹ Previous | 1 2 3 4 | Next ›
Most Helpful First | Newest First

46 of 47 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Wonderful, 14 Feb 2003
By 
K. Alley "Mermayd" (London, UK) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: The Joy Luck Club (Paperback)
The Joy Luck Club follows the lives of a group of Chinese women and daughters living in modern day San Francisco. Not unlike "How to Make an American Quilt" (not sure which came first) the book examines the difficult maternal relationships using flashbacks to various parts of the mother's lives. It is only once you know someone's history that you can understand why a person behaves the way they do.
I love this book. Reading it was one of those rare joys that made me forget who and where I was as I read it. I even managed to read throughout the entire night before noticing that the sun had come up. I had forgotten to go to bed! Beautifully drawn characters, elaborate but not complicated plots, and hauntingly evocative of descriptions of life for women in early 20th century China. The Chinese aspect of the story dominates but women from all cultures will recognise the universal relationships between mothers and daughters. It has even given me a new appreciate for Chinese food! Don't wait for a rainy day - read it now. Sisterhood is global.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


16 of 16 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A beautifully written story of family relationships., 11 Jun 2000
By A Customer
This review is from: The Joy Luck Club (Paperback)
I have just finished this book, after reading it in one day. The story unfolds through the narrative tales of eight women; four Chinese women who left China for America, and their daughters, who struggle to come to terms with their Chinese American identity. The book is beautifully written, and the personalities of all eight women come through very strongly. The tales of the mothers' lives in China are sensitively combined with the perceptions of the daughters, making the book a moving and beautiful one. I do not hesitate to recommend this book to anyone, but if you enjoyed 'Wild Swans' I think you would especially enjoy this book.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A beautiful set of tales...but little thread running through, 30 Dec 2000
By A Customer
This review is from: The Joy Luck Club (Paperback)
Amy Tan continues to enchant her readers with wondrous but tragic tales of life, loves and disappointments. Having read two of her other works her style is familiar and her ability to tell a story placing layer upon layer of conflicting and often confusing emotions together yet do it with such deft ease and understanding is so enjoyable. There is so much of family relationships of high expectations and perhaps too easy resulting disappointments or at least the character's perception of them. Perhaps though she should try to write something a bit less cynical, less steeped in sorrow and hardship and something with more hope for the future rather than the all too familiar bitter-sweet ending. It does lay life bare in many ways though the hardships gone through in the past (mother's generation) may only have been typical of a certain time and place and the hardships of the present are really mostly of the daughter's own making i.e. they seem not to look for great love merelt something convenient and then end up discarding their modern marriages as easily as they came by them. It does, though, show the value of a strong set of beliefs and traditions by which to live as, although they may seem outdated to the modern generation as in the stories of the daughters who felt more settled with modern (cynical and mistrusting) America than with ancient Chinese customs, the value of believing in something becomes more and more apparent as the younger generation is seen to be part of the throwaway society assigning little value or effort to making things count which is strongly contrasted to the older generation of Chinese born mothers who know what they believe and try to teach their daughters the importance of faith and hope before it is too late. One thing though, it would be easier to follow these separate and basically unrelated tales if each family's tale were told separately so as not to confuse the reader by switching back and forth and back and forth as she does chapter after chapter. Beautiful little tales of pride, hope and tragedy but the characters still seem to lack any confidence in themselves - the older generation still trying to convince themselves to cling onto what little hope they feel they have left (often lived out through their own children) yet the younger generation themselves seeming to not only resent this intrusion into their lives (wishing merely to be left alone in order to just be themselves) yet at the same time giving a sense that they are completely 'lost', neither understanding that love and marriage should mean the same thing nor seeming to really know exactly who or what they really are. Perhaps that's the crux of all of her books, a sense of identity crisis in first generation immigrants.......
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars The need to belong and the desire to escape, 5 Feb 2003
Focussing on a female dominated mother-daughter generation gap and a Chinese-American culture difference Tan mixes social and personality differences to create a broad and encompassing novel about change. TJLC shows, in its older generation, the huge amounts of reliance displaced individuals have on bonding with other alienated people and the human struggle surmounted to achieve happiness. The daughters in TJLC portray the difficulties sometimes endured being Chinese-American and seeming to be an outsider of each culture. So through these two different aspects of the novel Tan incorporates a “traditional” Chinese story at times in the vein of a less political Wild Swans and the cultural disparity of the modern world adds weight to the “emigrant” literature already established from writers such as Frank McCourt (Irish immigration to the USA) and Caryl Phillips (West Indian immigration to Britain).
Sometimes the tone of TJLC can be overly sentimental and meandering but in all Tan creates a moving tale of displacement, the need to belong and solidarity.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Good thought provoking read, 18 Sep 1999
This review is from: The Joy Luck Club (Paperback)
Never having read a book about Chinese culture or family and having picked the book at random I was entranced and informed. The story is of the relationships between four Chinese women,now living in San Francisco, and their mothers and daughters. A great first novel.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


4.0 out of 5 stars Great Stories, 1 Jan 2010
This review is from: The Joy Luck Club (Paperback)
First, I think one needs to be aware that the book tells the story of three sets of mothers and daughters as individual accounts in first person. Each individual chapter was more or less presented as a stand-alone story. I could not integrate the stories and make them into a whole. I found it hard to connect mother and daughter pairs, and that frustrated me a little.

Having said this, each individual chapter/story is wonderful in its insights into inter-generational tension that is based not only on culture but also on the age-old issues between mothers and daughters. Each woman experiences great struggles and life changes, and it is easy to either identify directly with them or to be fascinated by their exotic circumstances. In addition, it paints a lively picture of Chinese American life in particular. If you have had any contact with it, particularly in San Francisco, you will take from this book a much deeper understanding of Chinese Americans' experience, and it may just explain some things you always wondered about. Read this book as a loosely connected set of short stories, and you will enjoy it.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


5.0 out of 5 stars the content of the story and the the author, 18 Aug 1999
By A Customer
This review is from: The Joy Luck Club (Paperback)
This is a beautiful story of the intertwined lives of eight very brave women. The three dimensional characters developed through the chapters only enhance the book to a higher point. The constrasting images and characters are used expertly by Tan to show a relevant picture of the lives of some Chinese and their American descendants, while also allowing others to gain an insight not seen through experience. This book is so well woven with the change between mothers and daughters and their lives, that I hope to one day be able to write just like this. This book is a pleasure to read and I recommend it to anyone who loves a book not just to tell you a story, but to make you think and feel at the same time.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


12 of 16 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Moving, enlightening and a joy to read., 21 Jun 2001
This review is from: The Joy Luck Club (Paperback)
Addressing the differences between cultures and several generations, Amy Tan's novel is an enlightening, involving and thoroughly enjoyable work. The characters are beautifully portrayed, while the fragmented nature of the chapters poignantly demonstrates the sheer variety of differing lifestyles, beliefs and opinions. This book left me with a lump in my throat, desperate for more. I thoroughly recommend this novel to anyone, and I shall certainly be reading more of Amy Tan's work in the future.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars, 12 July 2014
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This review is from: The Joy Luck Club (Paperback)
Thanks!
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


4.0 out of 5 stars Enjoyable, but a little hard to follow, 24 Jun 2014
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This review is from: The Joy Luck Club (Kindle Edition)
I really enjoyed this, but I did find at time's getting confused as to the mothers and daughters. A really enjoyable read, though.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


‹ Previous | 1 2 3 4 | Next ›
Most Helpful First | Newest First

This product

The Joy Luck Club
£3.95
Add to wishlist See buying options
Only search this product's reviews