Tuesday, May 16, 2006

The Bonesetter's Daughter ***1/2 stars

Okay... So I've dished the dirt on book club, ie. I've told you about all the drunken debauchery and virgin sacrifices, but I've only alluded to the "literary discussions and sh1t" that goes on. So to prove to you that I have in fact read a couple of books this past year, I've decided to do the odd book review on the ones I've enjoyed so far.
(Please note! I have read more than just the couple of books I’ll be raving about every so often. It’s just that I thought I’d review the ones that really meant something to me. So there!)
The first, The Bonesetter’s Daughter, is the kind of “standard favourite” you would expect to find at any decent book club. It’s the book equivalent of a “chick flick”, but I gotta say, I really enjoyed it. In the first third of Bonesetter, I thought that maybe Amy Tan had lost her mojo, and was trying to bore me to death, or at least lull me into a coma so I’d never be able to tell anyone how bad the book was… until! Kah-boom! She whacks you with a story so rich, sad and incredible, you really can’t put the book down until you know it’s all gonna be okay. I think that maybe I didn’t enjoy the first part because I really couldn’t identify with the character of Ruth, an Asian-American who finds her old, eccentric Chinese mother to be an embarrassment to her in the ultra-slick, super-western world of America. The mom is very secretive about her past (wanting to protect Ruth from her sad story) so you could say that maybe Ruth doesn’t understand her mother and that’s why she pushes her away. But when her mother writes her story down for Ruth to read, Ruth is too busy (or lazy?) to have it translated and the mother’s story lies at the bottom of a desk drawer until she eventually starts to get sick, and Ruth (“I might lose my precious mom – WOE IS ME!”) finally decides to learn what her mother is about. (Lazy cow.) Anyway! If it were in dvd format, I would skip the Ruth bits and stick to the mom’s story, which is just… just… Trust me! Really REALLY amazing. So read it!

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