The Kitchen God's Wife Paperback – Sep 21 2006
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From Publishers Weekly
Tan's immensely perceptive and poignant second novel tells of an aging Chinese woman's relationship with her American daughter.
Copyright 1993 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
From School Library Journal
YA-- Fans of Tan's Joy Luck Club (Putnam, 1989) will love her powerful second novel. Here she creates an absorbing story about the lives of a Chinese mother and her adult American-born daughter. Pressured to reveal to the young woman her secret past in war-torn China in the 1940s, Winnie weaves an unbelievable account of a childhood of loneliness and abandonment and a young adulthood marred by a nightmarish arranged marriage. Winnie survives her many ordeals because of the friendship and strength of her female friends, the love of her second husband, and her own steadfast courage and endurance. At the conclusion, her secrets are uncovered and she shares a trust/love relationship with her daughter, Pearl, that was missing from both their lives. Some YAs may find the beginning a bit slow, but this beautifully written, heartrending, sometimes violent story with strong characterzation will captivate their interest to the very last page. --Nancy Bard, Thomas Jefferson Sci-Tech, Fairfax County, VA
Copyright 1991 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
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Top Customer Reviews
It is heartbreaking and angering to read how Wen Fu treated Winnie, and you actually begin to believe that this really happened. I highly recommend this book! I also recommend the Joy Luck Club, Hundred Secret Senses, and I am now reading The Bonesetter's Daughter, which I also recommend.
The story begins when both Winnie and her daughter Pearl are put in a position whereby they both have to reveal their secrets to each other. The novel, however, is dominated by Winnie's autobiographical account of her life in China before Pearl was born.
Winnie Louie told a fascinating tale of her life - a tale which included a strong focus on Chinese culture and history from a very human perspective. She was a very strong individual who was able to survive and prevail through terrible hardships ...And she was still able to pass on a strongly feminist message about self-repect to her daughter despite the emotional and physical abuse inflicted upon her by her first husband in China.
This is such a powerful story dealing with the mother-daughter bond, friendship, loyalty, cultural differentiations, personal choices, courage and self-respect. The story left me with a lump in my throat - feeling sad, touched and uplifted all at the same time. I can't wait to read THE HUNDRED SECRET SENSES next!
This was an interesting and well-written book, but my experience of it was interrupted by Tan's switching of narrators. Tan begins the novel with Pearl as narrator and then shortly into the book she switches to Winnie as narrator. We only hear her daughter's voice again at the end. So she sets the reader up for one voice but then she abandons that voice in favor of another. The other difficulty I had was that the further into the story I read, the more emotionally excruciating the experience of reading it became. There was nothing but misery everywhere for its characters. It was really more than both Winnie and I could take. Tan never lets up and by the end you just get tired of misfortune after misfortune after misfortune -- the story almost loses credibility because of it.
Most recent customer reviews
After trudging through several books that weren't worth reading- I finally found one that was... I enjoyed the story line, the mother-daughter relationship and learning about the... Read morePublished on March 24 2004
I have really enjoyed all of Tan's novels, however this book I have not been able to set down. She uses a style of a master story teller often ending a section which you've had... Read morePublished on Jan. 5 2004 by SeatownReader
WOW. This is the 3rd time I have read this book, and I just start weeping. I work on Broadway, ( yes I am a performer)and this book is wonderful. Read morePublished on Aug. 2 2003 by NV
Amy Tan has done it again! She brings the reader into another world to explore the difference a generation can make between parent and child and how love can transcend the... Read morePublished on March 18 2003
It starts great, but then it starts to linger off and it just doesn't have the same "hold" as "joy luck" did. Read morePublished on Feb. 11 2003
No mattter how much you love your mother, this will help you to appreciate her more. my family is not chinese, nor are we immigrants, however, after reading this book, I learned to... Read morePublished on Sept. 25 2002
I can't compare "The Kitchen God's Wife" to any other Amy Tan's novels since I haven't read any besides this one. Read morePublished on Aug. 7 2002 by Emily