Having read one of Amy Tan’s early works, The Joy Luck Club, I knew this would be an entertaining read, and it didn’t disappoint too much, although essentially, the long story of a group of twelve Americans on a tour to China and Burma got a little tedious by the time I reached the end of it. There’s certainly a great deal of touristic information and local color and you might feel somewhat confident planning your own trip to those lands after reading this book. Ironically, the journeys made in the relationships and personal lives of the people on this trip that continued much after the overseas trip had ended actually made for more of an interesting dimension, I thought.
A good effort, Ms. Tan, but the characters were all of them sadly immemorable, including your protagonist Bibi Chen. The overall plot lacked true momentum despite the movement of the people in the lands that they traversed.