We may not brush our hair, change out of our pajamas, or sit down at the dining table, but we always make time to read.
Sunday, August 26, 2012
The Hundred Secret Senses - Amy Tan
Amy Tan is one of those writers who books I always seem to enjoy when I read them, but I haven't read too many - and luckily for me, she has a lot of them. In The Hundred Secret Senses, half-Chinese-American Olivia is pestered constantly by her full-Chinese born half-sister, Kwan Li. Olivia just wants to live a normal existence, but finds this difficult with her sister constantly interferring with advice - particularl advice from the ghosts that she is in contact with on a regular basis. When Olivia's marriage fall apart, she agrees to travel to China - with Kwan Li and her ex-husband. The book switches between the present day - and Kwan's storytelling of her previous life in China. As with many of Tan's books, it is a story of past lives and family history, and establishing identity in the face of tremendous expectation. While the characters were at times infuriating - Olivia is so stubborn (and downright mean at times) and Kwan is so overbearing - Tan writes them as real people - just like one's own family who you can't help but love and protect despite their never-ending annoyances.