As part of my "Recommended By Friends" reads of 2016, I took the suggestion from my friend Jakki, to read The Joy Luck Club by Amy Tan. Amy Tan's work has been a whisper in my ear from the moment I started reading adult fictional novels, so you can imagine my excitement when I had an excuse to start her first work of fiction.
The Joy Luck Club follows the lives of four women who have survived the hardships of being raised in China, and their four daughters, who have had the drastically opposite upbringing of being raised in America. When one of the mothers passes away unexpectedly, things are thrown into perspective for the remaining mothers and daughters alike.
Together, the characters and readers of The Joy Luck Club will experience heartbreak, life-altering changes, and the meaning of family during dire times.
The Joy Luck Club is truly a powerful read. From the very start, I was charmed by these four older ladies, their stories of being brought up in China, and their American-raised daughters. Of course, there were times when my heart broke for them, which is only natural when you read a book about characters growing up in not-so-ideal situations. But in the end, there was nothing in this story that could sour the immensely feel-good ending that brought tears to my eyes.
I had favorite characters, and characters that I wanted to slap silly (as per usual), but not one character was either unlikable or uninteresting. There were no "dry" spots that bored me, there were no individual stories that lost my interest, and there was honestly NO aspect of this book that I disliked. Except perhaps the fact that it was too short.
This book is charming, magical, and very moving. I enjoyed every single minute of it, and finishing it has only made me more rabid to try more of Amy Tan's work.
I absolutely loved, loved, LOVED the Joy Luck Club.