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February 12, 2016

Looking Back - The Hundred Secret Senses


Looking Back... In an effort to transfer my book journal entries over to this blog, I'm going to attempt to post (in chronological order) an entry every Friday. I may or may not add extra commentary to what I jotted down in these journals.



The Hundred Secret Senses by Amy Tan
Fiction
1995 Putnam
Finished on February 4, 1996
Rating: 4/5 (Very Good)





Publisher's Blurb:

Set in San Francisco and in a remote village of Southwestern China, Amy Tan's The Hundred Secret Senses is a tale of American assumptions shaken by Chinese ghosts and broadened with hope. In 1962, five-year-old Olivia meets the half-sister she never knew existed, eighteen-year-old Kwan from China, who sees ghosts with her "yin eyes." Decades later, Olivia describes her complicated relationship with her sister and her failing marriage, as Kwan reveals her story, sweeping the reader into the splendor and violence of mid-nineteenth century China. With her characteristic wisdom, grace, and humor, Tan conjures up a story of the inheritance of love, its secrets and senses, its illusions and truths.

My Original Notes:

Great book! Quick read. Very well done. Another selection for my small book group. Maybe we'll discuss it over Chinese food. {We did! Then we played Mah Jong. Lots of fun.}

My Current Thoughts:

Amy Tan was one of my favorite authors in the early 1990s. I loved The Joy Luck Club and The Kitchen God's Wife, so when The Hundred Secret Senses was published, I immediately bought the hardcover. I no longer own my copy, so somewhere along the way I must have decided it wasn't one I would ever re-read again. I do still own those first two novels and think it would be nice to read them again. It's been long enough that I have only a vague recollection of their plots.

Are you a fan of Amy Tan's novels? Have you read her latest book, The Valley of Amazement? Should I add it to my TBR list?

10 comments:

  1. I loved Amy Tan back in the 90s, too, but eventually stopped reading her when all her novels started blending together (for me, anyway). The Kitchen God's Wife was my favorite. Never read The Joy Luck Club, but it's in my Classics Club list. I'll be curious to hear what you think if you decide to read Valley of Amazement.

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    1. JoAnn, that's why I stopped reading them. I did the same thing with Gail Tsukiyama. I don't mind reading about Asian culture, but their books tend to focus on the same themes. Hmm, if you read The Joy Luck Club, I may join you since I really do want to read it again.

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  2. Yes, I love her work! Your book club meeting sounds like a lot of fun.

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    1. Kathy, I'm no longer in a book club. This was my very first of many and it was a lot of fun, although there were only 3 or 4 of us at any given time.

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  3. I have not read this one, but I did love The Joy Luck Club. I think that's the only one of her books that I've read. I'd like to reread it and maybe more of them. I have to be in the right mood though.

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    1. Well, if you wind up reading any of these books, let me know, Kay. I may join you since I really do want to read them again.

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  4. Oh yes I'm a fan but haven't read one of her books in such a long time. Have not read her latest but need to remember to look for it!

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    1. Iliana, I just realized that I haven't read another by Tan. Have you read Saving Fish from Drowning? It was published in 2005.

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  5. I loved The Joy Luck Club but wasn't as big a fan of this one for some reason. I can't recall if I've read any other of Tan's books but I'd definitely do so.

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    1. Lisa, I wasn't a big fan of The Bonesetter's Daughter, which came after this one. Maybe that's why I stopped reading her books.

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