The Bonesetter's Daughter

The Bonesetter's Daughter

by Amy Tan
4.4 132

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Overview

The Bonesetter's Daughter by Amy Tan

The Bonesetter’s Daughter dramatically chronicles the tortured, devoted relationship between LuLing Young and her daughter Ruth. . . . A strong novel, filled with idiosyncratic, sympathetic characters, haunting images, historical complexity, significant contemporary themes, and suspenseful mystery.”
Los Angeles Times

“TAN AT HER BEST . . . Rich and hauntingly forlorn . . . The writing is so exacting and unique in its detail.”
San Francisco Chronicle

“For Tan, the true keeper of memory is language, and so the novel is layered with stories that have been written down–by mothers for their daughters, passing along secrets that cannot be said out loud but must not be forgotten.”
The New York Times Book Review

“AMY TAN [HAS] DONE IT AGAIN. . . . The Bonesetter’s Daughter tells a compelling tale of family relationships; it layers and stirs themes of secrets, ambiguous meanings, cultural complexity and self-identity; and it resonates with metaphor and symbol.”
The Denver Post

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780345455710
Publisher: Random House Publishing Group
Publication date: 01/29/2002
Pages: 416

About the Author

Amy Tan is the author of The Joy Luck Club, The Kitchen God's Wife, The Hundred Secret Senses, and two children's books, The Moon Lady and The Chinese Siamese Cat, which will be adapted as a PBS series for children. Tan was a co-producer and co-screenwriter of the film version of The Joy Luck Club, and her essays and stories have appeared in numerous magazines and anthologies. Her work has been translated into more than twenty-five languages.

Tan has a master's degree in linguistics from San Jose State University and worked as a language specialist to programs serving children with developmental disabilities.

Hometown:

San Francisco, California and New York, New York

Date of Birth:

February 19, 1952

Place of Birth:

Oakland, California

Education:

B.A., San Jose State University, 1973; M.A., 1974

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The Bonesetter's Daughter 4.4 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 132 reviews.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Not her best book but overall pretty good. My one star is because the book is $18.99, and the paperback is $7.99. I have to pay an extra $11 to basically rent a book and never completely own it or be able to let someone else read my copy? That is ridiculous. If the paperback is $7.99, the ebook should be no more than that, and probably less.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
It's a somewhat slow start (the first 2-3 chapters) but once it gets going it really swept me away. I thought it was even better than The Joy Luck Club, even though I liked that too.  This story is divided into three parts, the first and third told in present day (for the book, in the 90s) from American-born Ruth's perspective. The middle part is told from her mother's perspective as a child, teen, and then young adult in China. It portrays the complexities of familial relationships, particularly mother-daughter, and the trials of love, loss, etc. I was transported through the characters' many sorrows. Tan is able to make the characters come fully to life and the plot was both believable and surprising. I highly recommend this book.
Mavis1129 More than 1 year ago
I listened to this on audio and really liked it. The Joy Luck Club is more popular than this book and I don't know why. This one was way better. Overview: Ruth has always had a complex relationship with her mother. Through her childhood, she struggled to understand her mother's previous life in China and the marriage she had before her mother married her father. When her mother starts showing signs that she's losing her memory and even starts fabricating the truth, Ruth becomes really concerned. She looks to the pages her mother wrote in Chinese and had given her years ago. Ruth had set them aside meaning to translate them but never got around to it. Now, she realizes it is her mother's life story and the importance it plays now that her mother doesn't know what is truth anymore. What she finds out, once it's translated, is the heartbreaking tale of the family secret that haunts her mother and the family curse she believes to exist. After reading the translated pages, Ruth looks back to the past and is able to see her mother with new eyes. Growing up she was annoyed and embarrassed by her mother's strange ways but is now able to see that her mother was just tormented by the ghost of her own mother. What's really sad is when it says that Ruth shoves her mother's pages in a drawer after failing at translating it herself. Every year her mother would ask if she finished translating it until she eventually stopped asking, saying that Ruth was too busy for her. When you realize the importance of the papers, it's that much more heartbreaking to know how her mother must have felt. Later, in her mother's story, you see the same thing happening when she refuses to read papers given to her, resulting in tragic consequences.
Sesquipedalian_Amazon More than 1 year ago
In my opinion this is Amy Tan's best novel, even exceeding the very popular (and well written) "The Joy Luck Club." This novel is a beautiful aria to the relationship between a mother and daughter. It involves secrets, survival, sacrifice, and the deep pains and joys that can be caused by the greatest love. Allow yourself to be swept into this book; it will be a journey well worth taking, and one you are not likely to forget.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Beautiful, well-written novel. The story is very good and it kept my attention throughout the entire book from the beginning to the end. I was not familiar with Tan's works. This novel made me want to read more of Tan's stories. Amy Tan is a talented writer.
Guest More than 1 year ago
I have read all of Amy Tan's novels and loved them! True, each book has a certain redundancy, but each has a unique story. I love the way she uses words to describe emotions, thoughts, characters and places. I feel as though I am living the lives of her characters. 'The Bonesetter's Daughter' is a sad tale that will effect you emotionally. The story has inspired me to explore my parent's Indian heritage.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Pullls you into another cultiure. You never feel like an ooutsider.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Tan did a wonderful job showing how uncovering your family's truths and past can be a liberating and challenging experience.
cjtegCG More than 1 year ago
I am just learning about Amy Tan novels. I am now a fan. Not predictable, very interesting insider culture information, wonderful characters. I love her writing. I usually read non fiction but this is almost like non fiction with having so much of the China culture strongly drawn upon for the story. I am trying to read the novels in order of having been written. I am not sure this is important but somehow I think that it might be.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I have read several of her books and hope to read more. The descriptions of China and the culture is explained in such a way, you can almost see it. The story is one of a family in China, it's mysteries, it's imagined curses, it's past and future. I'll read it again.
DoranneLongPTMS More than 1 year ago
I thoroughly enjoy reading books by Amy Tan. She opens worlds that are unknown to me, including history and culture. She helps me to refrain from judgement as it is impossible for me to walk in another's shoes.
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BrianGriffith More than 1 year ago
Tan weaves a vast tale of family secrets revealed, in which people seem to hide all that is best in themselves. The secrecy impoverishes their relationships, till the truth comes to light and exposes their authentic greatness. All their suffering, struggling, even their soul-murdering resentment of each other, then comes together in a coherent pattern of beauty that's almost too good to be true. Maybe the ending is a bit too happy. But Tan is not one to deny the ultimate human dream. And the path to that ending is so real, so gritty, at times so heart-poundingly gripping, that all the happiness is richly deserved. --author of A Galaxy of Immortal Women: The Yin Side of Chinese Civilization
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Makes you look at your own relationship and insecuities
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