Night of Many Dreams

( 11 )

Overview

As World War II threatens their comfortable life in Hong Kong, young Joan and Emma Lew escape with their family to spend the war years in Macao. When they return home, Emma develops a deep interest in travel and sets her sights on an artistic life in San Francisco, while Joan turns to movies and thoughts of romance to escape the pressures of her real life. As the girls become women, each follows a path different from what her family expects. But through periods of great happiness and sorrow, the sisters learn ...

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Night of Many Dreams: A Novel

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Overview

As World War II threatens their comfortable life in Hong Kong, young Joan and Emma Lew escape with their family to spend the war years in Macao. When they return home, Emma develops a deep interest in travel and sets her sights on an artistic life in San Francisco, while Joan turns to movies and thoughts of romance to escape the pressures of her real life. As the girls become women, each follows a path different from what her family expects. But through periods of great happiness and sorrow, the sisters learn that their complicated ties to each other—and to the other members of their close-knit family—are a source of strength as they pursue their separate dreams.

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
"Delicately fashioned . . . Evocative." —The New York Times Book Review

"Tsukiyama tells a quietly powerful and understated story of women finding their way in the world, and the strength they derive from family ties." —San Francisco Chronicle

"Grows in richness as it proceeds, a paean to the sustaining pleasures of family." —Booklist

"Tsukiyama writes with great sensory detail, allowing her reader to touch, taste, and feel the world she creates." —Library Journal

"With unexpected poignancy . . . Tsukiyama skillfully demonstrates how the strength of family bonds can provide spiritual sustenance." —Publishers Weekly

San Francisco Chronicle
Tsukiyama tells a quietly powerful and understated story of women finding their way in the world, and the strength they derive from family ties.
Library Journal
A work of historical fiction, Tsukiyama's Samurai's Garden, LJ 2/15/95 latest novel contains several strong female characters. Set during the onset of the Japanese occupation of Hong Kong in 1940, it first introduces readers to sisters Joan and Emma Lew, ages 14 and nine. The girls, with their servant Foon and their mother's first cousin, Auntie Go, all live "privileged" lives together in Hong Kong until they decide to flee from the imposing Japanese and emigrate to Macao, leaving their father behind to watch the family home. At the war's end, the family returns to Hong Kong with the intention of rebuilding and reclaiming their lives. Culminating in the year 1965, this novel follows its characters through 15 years of growth, maturity, and self-discovery. The ending is a bit rushed, leaving the sisters' characters slightly underdeveloped and perhaps allowing room for a sequel?. But because Tsukiyama writes with great sensory detail, allowing her reader to touch, taste, and feel the world she creates, the work does remain a satisfying read. Recommended for Asian American and larger fiction collections.Shirley N. Quan, Orange Cty. P.L., Fountain Valley, Cal.
San Francisco Chronicle
Tsukiyama tells a quietly powerful and understated story of women finding their way in the world, and the strength they derive from family ties.
Bill Kent
Delicately fashioned....Evocative.-- The New York Times Book Review
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780312199401
  • Publisher: St. Martin's Press
  • Publication date: 7/1/2008
  • Edition description: Reprint
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 288
  • Sales rank: 323,614
  • Product dimensions: 5.40 (w) x 8.20 (h) x 1.00 (d)

Meet the Author

Born to a Chinese mother and a Japanese father in San Francisco, Gail Tsukiyama's novels include Dreaming Water, Women of the Silk, The Language of Threads, and The Samurai's Garden. She lives in El Cerrito, California.

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Reading Group Guide

As World War II threatens their comfortable life in Hong Kong, young Joan and Emma Lew escape with their family to spend the war years in Macao. When they return home, Emma develops a deep interest in travel and sets her sights on an artistic life in San Francisco, while Joan turns to movies and thoughts of romance to escape the pressures of her real life. As the girls become women, each follows a path different from what her family expects. But through periods of great happiness and sorrow, the sisters learn that their complicated ties to each other—and to the other members of their close-knit family—are a source of strength as they pursue their separate dreams.
Read More Show Less

Customer Reviews

Average Rating 4
( 11 )
Rating Distribution

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Sort by: Showing all of 11 Customer Reviews
  • Posted April 9, 2010

    Night of Many Dreams

    I had never heard of this book, until I just noticed it on a bookshelf. I have to say I was interested from the start, and this book kept taking different directions, and the author tells the story through the eyes of each character, which gives the book a very special something! Awesome book, and I recommend it to everyone! :D

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted August 23, 2006

    I AM A LOVIN ME SOME GAIL

    Night of many Dreams was the last book I read from Gail and I regretted I waited so long. A wonderful book of two sisters, family and friendships. I love her writing it's so hauntingly beautiful it just makes you heart ache because you want more. Gail please write another book.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted December 7, 2005

    Night Of Many Dreams: why you should read it

    When asked to choose one of about seven books in english class this semester, I was doubtful if Night Of Many Dreams would really be as great as my teacher exclaimed. I am happy to say that this book is extremely good. Traveling the life of one small family through the views of three different members, in two generations, was a reading experience I loved. The historical background was enough to make the story realistic, but not so much that the book became boring and a history lesson. Teenage girls will especially enjoy this, but anyone could love this somewhat easy read about young girls growing up in Hong Kong.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted September 14, 2000

    a serene tour de force

    I was recommended to this book by a friend, and before that, I had never even heard of the author. The plot wasn't intricate nor breathtaking, nor is it the psychological workings of the characters violently stirring. This story of Emma and the years of her childhood to adulthood set with the scenes of boisterous Hong Kong, friendly Macao, and abroad in San Francisco could only be depicted with a style of such grace and candor. Whenever I feel like a rest from the rush of this world, I would pick up another book by Tsukiyama and allow the lightness of her beautiful writing life me up.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted March 26, 2002

    wonderful!

    at times it seems depressing but it makes you feel good for some reason. i really enjoyed it!

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    Posted March 3, 2010

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    Posted May 8, 2010

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    Posted November 22, 2011

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