Dreams of Joy: Book Review

Dreams of JoyIn the mood for a Main Course type of book? Then read, Dreams of Joy!

Lisa See’s novLisa See’s novel, Dreams of Joy, is a twist on the American dream and explores the definition of happiness. The book starts in 1958 and Joy is a nineteen-year-old Chinese woman born in America living with her parents, and her aunt and uncle in a small house in Chinatown, L.A. She returns home from the University of Chicago with Communistic ideals, which has devastating effects including the death of the man she knew as her father, and the revelation of who her biological parents truly are. Armed with nothing more than her biological father’s name, Joy runs away to China to find him and start a new life.
Joy finds her father quickly and is swept away in the fabulous life her famous father lives. She doesn’t realize, though, that not all is what it seems in Red China. Meanwhile, her mother, Pearl, returns to China, twenty years after her escape, with the intention of finding Joy and bringing her back to the United States. However, once mother and daughter are united, Joy refuses to leave. She has her mind set on settling down in a rural area in China with a local man. It isn’t until Joy leaves the life of her new father, that she understands what life is really like under Chairman Mao, and that her interpretation of Communism is terribly wrong. Can Pearl get to Joy in time? Will they be able to sneak out of China and return to America? You’ll have to read to find out.
This book is interesting, although, towards the 3/4th mark, it gets incredibly disturbing—almost too horrific, changing the book from literary fiction to Macabre, which is unnecessary. The book is arranged into four parts and is approximately 350 pages long. el, Dreams of Joy, is a twist on the American dream and explores the definition of happiness. The book starts in 1958 and Joy is a nineteen-year-old Chinese woman born in America living with her parents, and her aunt and uncle in a small house in Chinatown, L.A. She returns home from the University of Chicago with Communistic ideals, which has devastating effects including the death of the man she knew as her father, and the revelation of who her biological parents truly are. Armed with nothing more than her biological father’s name, Joy runs away to China to find him and start a new life.
Joy finds her father quickly and is swept away in the fabulous life her famous father lives. She doesn’t realize, though, that not all is what it seems in Red China. Meanwhile, her mother, Pearl, returns to China, twenty years after her escape, with the intention of finding Joy and bringing her back to the United States. However, once mother and daughter are united, Joy refuses to leave. She has her mind set on settling down in a rural area in China with a local man. It isn’t until Joy leaves the life of her new father, that she understands what life is really like under Chairman Mao, and that her interpretation of Communism is terribly wrong. Can Pearl get to Joy in time? Will they be able to sneak out of China and return to America? You’ll have to read to find out.
This book is interesting, although, towards the 3/4th mark, it gets incredibly disturbing—almost too horrific, changing the book from literary fiction to Macabre, which is unnecessary. The book is arranged into four parts and is approximately 350 pages long.

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