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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Extremely interesting and well written!
Ruth, a ghostwriter for women's self help books, lives with her boyfriend Art and his two daughters in San Francisco. She becomes increasingly concerned about her mother's dementia. Ruth finds it hard to tell what is real and not real in her mother's mind until she comes across a diary recording her mother's past. Ruth discovers that her mother LuLing is from the town...
Published on July 18 2004 by M. T. Guzman

versus
3.0 out of 5 stars It's been said, but...
I'm probably repeating the same thing everyone else has already said but...
I've read all of Tan's books and while they're quick, easy reads they've begun to sound disturbingly the same. It's always a mother-daughter issue cloaked with "ancient Chinese secrets" and dysfunctional cross cultural communications. The Bonesetter's Daughter has some original...
Published on Feb. 24 2004 by Jenni


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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Extremely interesting and well written!, July 18 2004
By 
M. T. Guzman "squeakychu" (Rockville, MD, USA) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: The Bonesetter's Daughter (Mass Market Paperback)
Ruth, a ghostwriter for women's self help books, lives with her boyfriend Art and his two daughters in San Francisco. She becomes increasingly concerned about her mother's dementia. Ruth finds it hard to tell what is real and not real in her mother's mind until she comes across a diary recording her mother's past. Ruth discovers that her mother LuLing is from the town of Immortal Heart in China. There her family was well known, not only for their ink business, but for her father's being a famous "Bonesetter" who treated his patients with "modern, try-anything, and traditional" medicine. Crucial to his practice of traditional medicine were dragon bones gathered by LuLing's family from the Monkey's Jaw, a secret place in a cave in the deepest ravines of a dry riverbed. LuLing's most beloved nursemaid, Precious Auntie, taught her the secret of unearthing these dragon bones.
This beautiful story, like other Amy Tan novels, dwells on women's relationships. As the novel opens, we explore Ruth's feelings of frutration as a daughter trying to deal with an independent, yet increasingly demented mother. We also see her trying to be a mother to her boyfriend's two young daughters. As we read the diary of LuLing, we see how hidden family secrets twist women's relationships into never-anticipated situations.
This work is so beautiful because it deals with real emotions, different for each individual, in two different cultures, settings, and times. It helps the reader imagine what it would be like to be in any of those sitations by showing one family's experiences within that realm of existence.
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3.0 out of 5 stars It's been said, but..., Feb. 24 2004
This review is from: The Bonesetter's Daughter (Mass Market Paperback)
I'm probably repeating the same thing everyone else has already said but...
I've read all of Tan's books and while they're quick, easy reads they've begun to sound disturbingly the same. It's always a mother-daughter issue cloaked with "ancient Chinese secrets" and dysfunctional cross cultural communications. The Bonesetter's Daughter has some original ideas that could have been developed in many different ways. The main character is a ghost writer and Tan uses this to tie in Chinese mysticism in what could have been a very clever storyline. But instead, it's merely a very interesting idea hidden beneath a worn out framework. I'd like to see Tan attempt something new.
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5.0 out of 5 stars GREAT AUDIOBOOK, Feb. 13 2001
By 
AMY TAN AND JOAN CHEN MADE ME LAUGH AND MADE ME SOB IN THE SPACE OF MOMENTS.I HAVE NEVER BEEN AS MOVED.IT IS AN EXERCISE IN PERFECTION.MISS TAN REVISITS THE TERRITORY INTRODUCED IN THE JOY LUCK CLUB AND NOW IT IS EVEN MORE RIVETING.THIS WAS THE LISTENING EXPERIENCE OF A LIFETIME.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Another good one..., April 18 2005
By 
N. Jeannotte "nikkij73" (Victoria, British Columbia Canada) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: The Bonesetter's Daughter (Mass Market Paperback)
Amy Tan is always able to weave and interesting story that encapsulates both past and present day. The mother and daughter stories are something most women can probably relate to on some level. An interesting read and once I got past the first little bit, the story flowed very well. It gives the reader such an insight into historic China.
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4.0 out of 5 stars Unveiling greatness too well hidden, June 24 2011
By 
Brian Griffith (Toronto, Canada) - See all my reviews
(TOP 500 REVIEWER)   
This review is from: The Bonesetter's Daughter (Mass Market Paperback)
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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3.0 out of 5 stars Not As Good As the Others, Oct. 17 2007
By 
Nicola Manning-Mansfield (Ontario, Canada) - See all my reviews
(TOP 50 REVIEWER)    (HALL OF FAME)   
This review is from: The Bonesetter's Daughter (Mass Market Paperback)
It has been quite a while since I read Amy Tan's first three books and this fourth one did fall short of my expectations. Amy Tan fans will enjoy but if you haven't read Tan before I do not recommend this as your first read, try The Joy Luck Club or The Hundred Secret Senses instead
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5.0 out of 5 stars I loved this book!, July 16 2004
By 
Sheila Holsinger (Dallas, Texas USA) - See all my reviews
This review is from: The Bonesetter's Daughter (Mass Market Paperback)
I am not going to give a plot summary like so many other reviewers have done. I will simply say this: if you are looking for an excellent book, read The Bonesetter's Daughter. It's worth your time.
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4.0 out of 5 stars Slow at first..., April 21 2004
This review is from: The Bonesetter's Daughter (Mass Market Paperback)
I really liked this novel, although the beginning was a little slow and I felt like it wasn't going anywhere. I got into it when Ruth started telling her history, and then I really got into it when we were learning about LuLing's history. I've read all of Amy Tan's books and this one is probably my second favorite (after the Joy Luck Club).
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3.0 out of 5 stars Great potential but disappointing, April 11 2004
This review is from: The Bonesetter's Daughter (Mass Market Paperback)
This book is built around an interesting idea. Ruth, a Chinese American childless woman in her late 40s discovers her mother's history when she finds out that her mother has Alzheimer's. By learning about her mother's descent from a bonesetter's daughter and her difficult early life, she better understands who her mother is and who she is. Unfortunately though, it reads like an early draft, in need of more work in order to truly bring the readers into Chinese life. It pales compared to Wild Swans. A book with great potential, but overall, disappointing.
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5.0 out of 5 stars The Bonesetter's Daughter, April 4 2004
This review is from: The Bonesetter's Daughter (Mass Market Paperback)
Amy Tan is at the top of her form with The Bonesetter's Daughter, and no other author does justice to the intricacies of the mother/daughter relationship like Tan. She is the master at taking details of Chinese culture and presenting them in a universal way that all mothers and all daughters can recognize.
The Bonesetter's Daughter takes place alternately in present day San Francisco and in 1920s China, where Luling struggles through a life cluttered with bad luck. With her Americanized daughter, Ruth, in northern California, Luling still feels stifled and afraid by the bad luck she is certain plagues them. Even as an adult, Ruth feels the weight of her mother's worries and guilt-ridden lessons. When Ruth learns that Luling has Alzheimer's disease, she realizes that she must come to terms with her feelings for and about her mother. But first she must learn the truth about her mother's earlier life in China.
This is a heartrending novel for mothers of daughters or daughters of mothers. How many of us have had to learn that when our mothers are criticizing us they are really loving us? How many of us have yearned to know the truth of our mothers' past, who they were before we were in the world? There are many universal truths displayed throughout Tan's fiction. Her novels show that though daughters do not wish to repeat the patterns set by their mothers, they are almost certainly destined to, that is, unless they make the conscious decision to release the pain and longing. As daughters we inherit our mother's weaknesses, but as adults we can reappropriate weakness into strength.
A longtime fan of Tan's, I was thrilled reading The Bonesetter's Daughter and could not put it down. Universal, honest, achingly true, Tan's straightforward prose speaks to the strengths and the weaknesses of the timeless bond between mothers and daughters.
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The Bonesetter's Daughter
The Bonesetter's Daughter by Amy Tan (Mass Market Paperback - Jan. 29 2002)
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