...tre destini legati indissolubilemnte alla storia della Cina. Aspettavo con ansia di leggere il seguito de "Le ragazze di Shanghai" e devo dire che non mi ha affatto deluso. Mi ha interessato molto vedere con gli occhi di Joy e Pearl la cin...tre destini legati indissolubilemnte alla storia della Cina. Aspettavo con ansia di leggere il seguito de "Le ragazze di Shanghai" e devo dire che non mi ha affatto deluso. Mi ha interessato molto vedere con gli occhi di Joy e Pearl la cina ai tempi di Mao, le assurde pretese nei confronti della popolazione e dei contadini in particolare. Sembra assurdo che tutto ciò sia avvenuto solo una sessantina di anni fa. Anche se il pretesto per raccontare questo pezzo di storia è un pò assurdo (Joy 19enne nata a vissuta a Los Angeles che decide di abbandonare tutto per unirsi alla causa del grande Balzo cinese). Ho letto d'un fiato il romanzo sino all'ultima pagina , nella speranza che ci fosse un lieto fine!!!...Continua Nascondi
I was very disappointed with this book. I had high hopes because I really did enjoy Shanghai Girls. The beginning of the book wasn’t so bad actually. It was pretty interesting. I liked the way you follow Joy through her journey to China - it was an eI was very disappointed with this book. I had high hopes because I really did enjoy Shanghai Girls. The beginning of the book wasn’t so bad actually. It was pretty interesting. I liked the way you follow Joy through her journey to China - it was an eye opener, but her naivete also gets the best out of her as well. The reader already knows she’s in for a quite a bit of pain and suffering and so sometimes you find yourself shaking your head at Joy’s blind faith in the system.
I actually preferred Pearl’s point of view of the story and her journey, because she had left so much behind and some questions were left unanswered. I loved how she went back home, back to her town and back to where she used to live, to find it radically changed, but she found people she recognized. It wasn’t really a reunion that would be considered nice, but after so many years of not seeing these people, it was nice to see they were still there. I really liked reading Pearl because she showed a lot of strength and courage to go back and face anything to get Joy back.
When the Great Leap Forward comes along, I liked how this was added in, to make the plot move, and to put Joy and Pearl’s journeys on a similar backdrop, but I just could not get into it. It was really slow and things just seemed to drag. The switching back and forth from Pearl to Joy wasn’t so bad but the pace of the book was about the same as watching molasses being poured out of a container. Joy’s plot really did seem to drag its’ heels. I did not know how much of her stupidity I could take.
The ending wasn’t so bad. However by the time I was almost done, I really wanted it to be done. It was very drawn out, and the writing just seemed really bland. It did not have the same dramatic tone as Shanghai Girls did. One thing I will mention though, this book does a good job in drawing out feelings from the reader.
It wasn’t the greatest book, if you’re a fan, or wanting to know what happens at the end of Shanghai Girls, well you might as well read it. Otherwise, you could just skip it. It’s too slow and bland to be fully enjoyed which is too bad, it would have been an excellent novel otherwise....Continua Nascondi
The element that one'd feel the most empathetic with is probably the love between the sisters and daughters and mothers. Reading Joy's naivety at the beginning has pained me and we all would wish that Joy had just listened to Pearl (but then there woThe element that one'd feel the most empathetic with is probably the love between the sisters and daughters and mothers. Reading Joy's naivety at the beginning has pained me and we all would wish that Joy had just listened to Pearl (but then there would be no story !). Though there are a lot of details and a lot of hardship, at times I've still felt that the chain of events had come too easily and quickly and not enough details have been given (probably the book should be like 1000 pages rather than 354). Rationally, there could have been more stumbling blocks and more difficulties for Pearl and Joy to deal with. But emotionally, when I was reading, I was wishing at almost every moment that there wouldn't be another round of adversity coming to Pearl or Joy.
I like the happy ending but it's kind of too good to be true, unavoidably like a Hollywood ending. Nobody got hurt and lost ... How could Dun be sure that Pearl and Joy and others would get to Hong Kong successfully ?! It's a bit like the adventure of Indiana Jones or Lara Croft that one goes into a mission and comes out intact. Joy's adventure including meeting and even talking with the "Helmsman" Chairman Mao ! ... Another probably irrational feeling is that the novel seems to end in a hurry, almost like being forced to end the story writing when the publication deadline had arrived.
Some details are interestingly refreshing. Killing sparrows led to more locusts which damage the crops. Trying to plant the crops denser than the soil could deal with led to worse production in quality and quantity. Plus the corrupt Communist cadres taking away more and more of the crops to the upper govt. from the farmer just to show that their village could meet certain unrealistic targets finally led to large scale famine in the village. The author obviously indicates that those 3 years were not natural calamities but more like human disasters.
On p.189, the author mentioned "Four Evils--sparrows, rats, insects and flies". I think "insects" should be replaced by "mosquitoes". Even author's website ("www.lisasee.com/dreamsofjoy-inside/historical-links/historical-links2/") says so.
One pleasant detail is that Hong Kong was again considered as an exit to freedom. But I doubt a bit that the Mainland Chinese or anybody was so sure that the entire Hong Kong territories would be returned to China in 1997. Before the 1984 Joint Declaration was signed, there had been various hopes and scenarios. Before then, it's not at all certain what'd happen in July 1997 (as Hong Kong Island/Kownloon were in principle ceded to Britain). The characters in this novel were awfully certain about Hong Kong's future ~40 years before 1997....Continua Nascondi