The Hundred Secret Senses

The Hundred Secret Senses

Book - 1995
Average Rating:
4
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"THE WISEST AND MOST CAPTIVATING NOVEL TAN HAS WRITTEN."--The Boston Sunday Globe
"TRULY MAGICAL . . . UNFORGETTABLE . . . The first-person narrator is Olivia Laguni, and her unrelenting nemesis from childhood on is her half-sister, Kwan Li. . . . It is Kwan's haunting predictions, her implementation of the secret senses, and her linking of the present with the past that cause this novel to shimmer with meaning--and to leave it in the readers mind when the book has long been finished."
--The San Diego Tribune
"HER MOST POLISHED WORK . . . Tan is a wonderful storyteller, and the story's many strands--Olivia's childhood, her courtship and marriage, Kwan's ghost stories and village tales--propel the work to its climactic but bittersweet end." --USA Today
"TAN HAS ONCE MORE PRODUCED A NOVEL WONDERFULLY LIKE A HOLOGRAM: turn it this way and find Chinese-Americans shopping and arguing in San Francisco; turn it that way and the Chinese of Changmian village in 1864 are fleeing into the hills to hide from the rampaging Manchus. . . . THE HUNDRED SECRET SENSES doesn't simply return to a world but burrows more deeply into it, following new trails to fresh revelations.
--Newsweek
Publisher: New York : G.P. Putnam's Sons, c1995.
ISBN: 9780804111096
080411109X
9780399141140
0399141146
Branch Call Number: FICTION Tan Amy
Characteristics: 358 p. ;,24 cm.

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GLNovak
Oct 23, 2017

This was the kind of story that made me just want to read right to the end in one sitting. The story itself, although interesting, was not the real reason. I just loved Tan's writing; her way of relating thoughts as interesting inner conversations with oneself. Her characters are always interesting and this story about two half-sisters really kept my attention. Olivia meets her half-sister when Kwan-Li arrives from China at the age of fourteen. She speaks an endearing, or annoying depending on your perspective, kind of English, and takes to Olivia in a big way proclaiming she will look after her always. It seems Kwan Li can see dead people with her yin eyes and believes that people are born again just to be with those they love. To enjoy this story you must believe that Kwan Li is exactly who she says she is with the abilities she says she has. I found her delightful with her fractured English and her seemingly always sunny disposition. Olivia in her own way was also endearing with her frustrations and her doubts about her life and her anguish about not having a child. As excellent a read as Tan's other books.

u
uncommonreader
Apr 04, 2013

Pop fiction. Set in California and Southern China, this novel tells the story of a woman and her half-sister, who see ghosts and tell ghost stories set in the 19th century. Unconvincing and unsatisfying.

penpencil22 Jun 24, 2011

My all-time favorite book by Amy Tan. gotta love Kwan :)

d
darcigirl
Feb 11, 2011

This was a magical book, hard to put down...finished it rather quickly due to compelling story and interesting characters.

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