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Publisher's Summary

Four Chinese women, drawn together by the shadow of their past, meet in San Francisco to play mah jong, invest in stocks, eat dim sum, and to "say" stories to each other. Nearly 40 years later, one of the women has died, and her daughter arrives to take her place. However, the daughter never expected to learn of her mother's secret lifelong wish - and the tragic way in which it has come true. The revelation creates among the women an urgent need to remember the past. What is lost between generations and among friends - and what is salvaged - resonates throughout this novel of friendship among women and the relations between mothers and daughters.
Jacket Illustration ©1989 Gretchen Shields; Copyright ©1989
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Critic Reviews

"Amy Tan effortlessly mixes tenderness and bitter irony, sorrow and slicing wit. The Joy Luck Club is a fabulous concoction." (Louise Erdrich)
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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful

By Leslie Teicholz on 03-16-04

Joy Luck - abridged

This is a fabulous story - extremely well written but should not be abridged. I would have given it five stars had I listened to the entire book. It needed the extra flesh.

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34 of 41 people found this review helpful


By Tammy on 02-19-16

The Story was OK, but the Narrator was terrible.

The Narrator was awful. Some of her voices sounded like 'Yoda' from "Star Wars"... To me it ruined the story. This is one of the few times that I really liked the movie more than the book.

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7 of 8 people found this review helpful

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Customer Reviews

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By dale on 04-09-15

A joyful experience

I had read this novel many years ago and needed to re read it to lecture about it. I loved it. It contains so much information on Chinese culture post WW2 and how our context impacts on not only our own lives but our children's lives, especially how behaviours and habits in our relationships can be intergenerational. After listening to it I also revisited the movie and it too is great. I want my adult daughter to read it now. So much to learn from this novel and so much to enjoy. The narration was very realistic and added to the sense of empathy the characters evoked in the listener.

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