by Amy Tan
Meh. That's probably the worst review for anything, but that's how I felt about this book. I think I have Dateline Syndrome with this Amy Tan book. Let me explain.
When I was in elementary and middle school Dateline was a new and fresh TV news magazine. I was addicted. I loved watching Dateline and I would often reference it when talking with friends. I was always shocked that they hadn't seen the Dateline I referred to. As I grew older, though, I lost my interest in Dateline. Either Dateline got ridiculously lame, or I grew up and Dateline was always produced at a 7th grade intelligence level. (I think it's a little bit of both.)
Well, I started reading Amy Tan's novels when I was in high school. My mind was literally blown with "The Kitchen God's Wife." I liked it better than "Joy Luck Club," the second novel I read. "The Hundred Secret Senses" was the last novel I read of Tan's until now. All three of those novels were great. But, now that I've returned to Tan with "The Bonesetter's Daughter" I'm left wondering if I liked those three novels because they were written to blow the mind of a high schooler and now, more than four years later, I'm just not that easily impressed? Or, is Amy Tan's writing going downhill? (This novel was written after the three I previously read.)
I don't know. One thing that I've noticed is that once writers find the formula that sells, they'll stick to it. David Sedaris is an example of this. In "Barrel Fever" you'll find fiction. No other pieces of fiction appear in his other books. And, as you read his books, you feel like it's all familiar and it's not as exciting as that rough first book. This could also be the case with Amy Tan.
"The Bonesetter's Daughter" is good. It's just not mind-blowing.