BookBrowse Reviews The Love Wife by Gish Jen

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The Love Wife

by Gish Jen

The Love Wife by Gish Jen X
The Love Wife by Gish Jen
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  • First Published:
    Sep 2004, 400 pages
    Paperback:
    Oct 2005, 400 pages

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'A darkly comic fairy tale about cultural assimilation'

A meddlesome Chinese-American bequeaths a mainland Chinese nanny (and distant relative) on her second generation American son and his blond wife in this 'darkly comic fairy tale about cultural assimilation' (Publishers Weekly).  Jen avoids the clichés of a standard evil-nanny plot by imbuing the story with great dollops of compassion, humor and attention to detail.  Personally, I found the story went on a little longer than I would have liked and I found myself intensely frustrated with some of the characters; however, as Publishers Weekly writes 'though the shifting first-person narratives sometimes come off as awkwardly stagey, this novel has a robust, lived-in quality that makes you miss it when it's over'. Library Journal tags The Love Wife as 'highly recommended' and The Los Angeles Times says 'Jen's humor and sharp writing are delightful...a tale about family love and commitment in an era of political correctness'.

This review is from the October 19, 2005 issue of BookBrowse Recommends. Click here to go to this issue.

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