I have noticed quite a few book blogs participate in Sunday Salon. I’m sorry but I don’t know who it originated with. It’s not my idea though. It is a recap of the week of the blogger where they get a chance to sit with friends, maybe have a coffee in hand and chat about how their week went regarding their interests, mainly books, but also life. I have thought of adding it to my blog so today is the day I begin…
I arrived home from Morocco on Thursday night very jet lagged. It is a long haul flying to Australia from that part of the world. I slept off and on for three days and have now emerged quite refreshed. Going from a very high heat to a wintry Tasmania hasn’t helped either.
I will post photos up in the coming weeks but wanted to touch base with people who are interested in life in Tassie.
I managed to read two books during my 25 day tour. I finished off The Joy Luck Club by Amy Tan in audio version, mainly on long bus rides as we toured Spain, Portugal and Morocco. I enjoyed this book but if you are one of the few that haven’t read it yet I suggest you read a copy of it and not listen to the audible version. The audio version uses quite cartoon like character voices in the narration of this story and it grated on my nerves at times. I noticed later on, when reading reviews on Good Reads the same comments were made regarding audible. I should have listened to the sample reading first. I will in future.
It is the story of four generations of women from China as their lives evolved and followed the youngest generation as she ends up in the United States. It was mainly depicted realistically I thought most of the time. Living in multi-cultural Australia, it is obvious to see how a new generation finds it easier as they have the English language to assimilate more easily. The first generation in a new country has many obstacles to overcome but future generations are the ones who learn the language and cultural ways of the new country. This can create difficulties between the parents and their children as each learn to understand the cultural differences within their own family as this growth develops.
Magda Szubanski highlights this as well in her book Reckoning as her family get used to Australian life having immigrated from Poland.
The other difficulty I had with the book is the way the narration jumps around. I found it very distracting. I would be well and truly involved in one character’s life then it would switch to another person in another time in another country. It was difficult at times, especially with an audio book, where I couldn’t flip back through pages to determine whose story was being told. The great grandmother? The grandmother? The mother? I would have preferred a narrative from one generation to the next in sequence but after rewinding the book a few times I was able to determine who was speaking.
I don’t think it is a great book as many on Good Reads seem to think but it was an interesting story that held my attention most of the time when I wasn’t being distracted by travel. I may have rated it higher if I were at home, reading comfortably in a chair for a prolonged period of time on a rainy day.
I’ll write about the second book I read on the flight home in a day or so. I enjoyed it much more but it was a completely different type of book. More to come on that soon.
I am happy to be home and it was fun to see my dogs explode in place when they realised I was back. Even our cats followed me around for a couple of days. It is now time to enjoy the winter months of Tasmania and look forward to the next journey the end of September. Hope this finds everyone doing well.
7 thoughts on “Sunday Salon…16 June”
Welcome back!! I may now be the only person left who has not read The Joy Luck Club! I’ve read many of Tan’s other novels but, for whatever reason, never got around to that one. I do plan to read it though, and will take your advice to avoid the audio. Thanks.
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Glad you and the Penguin made it back safely! 😀
I bet it’s nice to have a hero’s welcome from the dogs. I was away for just one night this weekend, and our dog Amber had just one night over the road being spoilt rotten by our lovely neighbour, but still, she’s sulking big time. She’s taken possession of the bed and wouldn’t even lift her head to look at me when I went in to turn on the electric blanket. It’s me that’s in the dog-house!
thanks Lisa, No I haven’t gotten any sulking here. It’s just jump in your face as much as possible and kiss you to death. Dogs do make me laugh.
That would’ve been quite an arduous journey I’m imagine , probably involving multiple flights. Takes the shine off holidays doesn’t it…. As for The Joy Luck Club, I think I would have given up in frustration with the confusion about who was who…
I almost did but the bus rides were long and the scenery got pretty flat and boring at times so I persevered.
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