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The Jade Peony By Wayson Choy,

  • Title: The Jade Peony
  • Author: Wayson Choy
  • ISBN: 9781550544688
  • Page: 173
  • Format: Paperback
  • Chinatown, Vancouver, in the late 1930s and 40s provides the setting for this poignant first novel, told through the vivid and intense reminiscences of the three younger children of an immigrant family They each experience a very different childhood, depending on age and sex, as they encounter the complexities of birth and death, love and hate, kinship and otherness MinChinatown, Vancouver, in the late 1930s and 40s provides the setting for this poignant first novel, told through the vivid and intense reminiscences of the three younger children of an immigrant family They each experience a very different childhood, depending on age and sex, as they encounter the complexities of birth and death, love and hate, kinship and otherness Mingling with the realities of Canada and the horror of war are the magic, ghosts, paper uncles and family secrets of Poh Poh, or Grandmother, who is the heart and pillar of the family.Wayson Choy s Chinatown is a community of unforgettable individuals who are neither this nor that, neither entirely Canadian nor Chinese But with each other s help, they survive hardship and heartbreak with grit and humour.
    The Jade Peony Chinatown Vancouver in the late s and s provides the setting for this poignant first novel told through the vivid and intense reminiscences of the three younger children of an immigrant famil

    One thought on “The Jade Peony”

    1. An easy and entertaining novel, if you re interested in Chinese culture you ll love this immigrant coming of age story Wayson Choy transports you to Vancouver s Chinatown circa 30 s early 40 s up to the outbreak of WW2 He does a beautiful job portraying a Chinese immigrant family, poignantly illustrated by the polar opposite personalities of grandmother Poh Poh and her westernized grandchildren Jook Liang the Shirley Temple wanna bee Jung Sum the adopted boy struggling with his awakening homosex [...]

    2. But there were good ghosts and bad ghosts, and you had to be careful not to insult the good ones nor be tempted by the bad ones And you had to know a ghost when you saw one Wayson Choy, The Jade PeonyI don t often read immigrant narratives, and not because I don t think these stories are worth telling But I have to confess to finding a certain predictable sameness in these accounts I made an exception, however, for Wayson Choy s The Jade Peony, which was immediately recognized as an important bo [...]

    3. This one grew on me after I got used to its gentle, understated approach to coming of age issues in a Chinese immigrant family in Vancouver during in the 30 s We get a sensitive and universal exploration of the challenges of growing up combined with a fresh children s perspective on the conflicts between following traditions of their immigrant parents versus assimilation to Western culture in an urban multicultural society.As in Kingsolver s Poisonwood Bible , the novel uses the narrative approa [...]

    4. Set in Vancouver s Chinatown in the late 1930s and early 40s, The Jade Peony follows three children growing up in one family Jook Liang, the only sister Jung Sum, Second Brother and adopted and Sek Lung, Third Brother and sickly This is a time when the Chinese who came to BC to work on the railway through the Rocky Mountains, paying the infamous Head Tax to do so, are the elders in the Chinatown society Back home in China, the Japanese are steadily conquering land and reports of butchering and g [...]

    5. Chinatown of the 1940 s in Vancouver, three children of Chinese immigrant parents nurture dreams of making their own mark on the world around them Jung Sum is an adopted son who fights in the boxing ring and wrestles with uncertainty about his own sexual identity Jook Liang dreams of escaping the confines of tradition to become the next Shirley Temple, and Sekky, the youngest child, surprises the rest of the family with his own quiet wisdom Taken from the Editors.As a born and bred Canadian and [...]

    6. Being an immigrant myself, who came to Canada in the 80 s, I was interested in reading this book from a personal perspective Choy paints a rather grim picture of Chinese immigrants in Canada in the 1930 s bachelor men unable to bring their families across, deaths in labour camps built to construct the Canadian railway from sea to shining sea , resident alien status with no hope of ultimate citizenship, second class treatment during medical emergencies, immigrants relegated to ghettos or Chinatow [...]

    7. Lyrical and moving the opening words of the blurb for this book and I don t think I can say it much better This is one of those all too rare novels that truly transports you to another time and place, immerses you into a culture and a life experience that is far from your own So much so that finishing it is rather a rude awakening.The story is set in immigrant Vancouver, Chinatown in the 1940 s In the family home of three generations of a Chinese family, we meet the matriarchal grandmother, the [...]

    8. Much to my delight, I was randomly assigned to read and defend Wayson Choy s The Jade Peony for a local Canada Reads gathering It was meant to be I had Wayson sign a copy of his 1995 novel for me just a few months ago when he was in Halifax for a reading of his most recent work, Not Yet A Memoir of Living and Almost Dying, and The Jade Peony has for many years been high on my favourite books list.The Jade Peony so eloquently combines the familiar with the unfamiliar The universal themes of comin [...]

    9. Finally finished dramatic ending , but I still can t figure out what it is about this book there is no high suspense plot, no huge character dramas for the most part, no adventure or quest or conflict propelling the book, but I can t put it down Really interesting cultural study, with great detail The first, and shortest, section with Liang is my favourite, the last one with Kiam was my second favourite I didn t like the Jung stories much.I still wonder why did he leave out first brother Kiam At [...]

    10. In a word beautiful I absolutely loved The Jade Peony Wayson Choy yay Canadian author tells the story of an immigrant Chinese family who come to Vancouver in the 1930s, as the conflict between Japan and China in the East, and Canada, Britain, et al and Germany in the West heats up I loved this book for many reasons First and foremost, Choy writes stunningly His prose is lyrical and the stories that he tells are deeply moving The family s story is told through the perspectives of three of the chi [...]

    11. It s like a 3.5 5 The story moves slowly but really picks up at the end when most of it comes together I found the three different perspectives to be a very effective way to tell the story I would call it a quiet story where people have loud interiors, if that makes sense I learned a lot about the Chinese Canadian experience from reading this, and it piqued my interest to learn .

    12. If your local library is ever selling about three boxes full of the same book for 10 cents a piece there is a reason I thought this book would be at least semi interesting because it takes place in Chinatown of Vancouver area which is familiar to me That s some hours and ten cents of my life I ll never get back.

    13. I had a hard time deciding whether to rate this one at 3 or 4, but finally settled on 3 I liked it but I didn t love it I do think it s an interesting read though and I would recommend it to almost anyone.The writing is lovely and I really enjoyed seeing some major Canadian historical events through the eyes of Chinese immigrants railroad construction and the creation of Canada, changing policies around immigration, the Depression in the 30 s, and the First World War in the 40 s The way the stor [...]

    14. With his debut novelThe Jade Peony, author Wayson Choy allows us a glimpse into the life of a Chinese immigrant family living in Vancouver s Chinatown, spanning from the 1930s to the 1940s The story is told through the perspective of three of the four children of that family Jook Liang, the only sister who curses the fact that she is regarded as useless because she is a girl and aspires to be an actress Jung Sum, the adopted brother who wants to be a professional boxer and struggles with his sex [...]

    15. This book was heartbreaking and beautiful It explores the complex family dynamics of an immigrant Chinese family in Vancouver It s fascinating to think about how a lot of Chinese families in North America were actually blended families before that was a term Due to the difficulties Chinese people had in immigrating to North America bc of anti Asian sentiment, many people were paper sons related to their sponsoring family only by thin lies and forged paperwork The book is broken up into three par [...]

    16. I picked this book up only because I d heard the author interviewed and I liked him I m glad I did, though it s not a genre I ve read much immigrant CanLit and I managed to avoid in in university, but since some of my husband s family are Chinese Canadian I figured I probably had some obligation of some sort to read about their early experiences in this country.It was actually a really, really good book Told from the perspective of the family s children, it paints a narrow, focused picture of Va [...]

    17. There is much to say for this book about a family of Chinese immigrants living in pre WWII Vancouver, BC This historical novel partially filled in a gap for me of this time period and locality It was interesting for me to read three different perspectives of the scene as told by each of 3 out 4 children a sequel called All That Matters adds the voice of the fourth child, the oldest one and and the only one born in China Anti Japanese sentiment comes in loud and clear in the last part of the book [...]

    18. I don t usually force myself to finish books, but I m glad that I did in this case The first half was sooo slow nothing happened and the characters were just meh, although I did enjoy the Chinese words thrown in every now and then I would read the words, hear them being said aloud in my head and then, ah yes, that glimmer of recognition I know what this means Yes so obviously not everybody will have the same experience reading this I like this aspect in Amy Tan s books too The second half was fa [...]

    19. I thought this was beautifully and thoughtfully written, giving insights to the life of immigrant families living in Vancouver, Canada in the years before and during WWII Here is a quote from Margaret Drabble, A true and touching insight into a largely unrecorded wartime world It s human and moving without being sentimental.A genuine contribution to history as well as to fiction I was reminded of another novel Hotel on the Corner of Bitter and Sweet which takes place in Seattle during similar ti [...]

    20. An immigrant family story that conveys Chinese value and cultural nuance through the granddaughter s young eyes in Vancouver, Canada of the mid 1930 s It is easy read As they live in Chinatown and are surrounded by others of Chinese origin in large numbers, I felt it told a heartfelt tale but not one that is comparable to an immigrant tale of, so to speak, going it alone outside of the original culture and language anchors of an ethic neighborhood I find I have a bias for the latter kind of tale [...]

    21. I m still processing this book There were some amazing and very interesting points of it Particularly considering I live beside the city it s set in I will say that I loved the characters Liang, Poh Poh, and Stepmother I wish that I could sit down and drink tea and exchange stories with them for hours Is it horribly sexist that I really only liked the female characters Yeah, probably LOL.

    22. It is a story told from three different perspectives that are all children of a Chinese immigrant family in Vancouver BC before and during WWII and how they are coping with a new culture, language and they fit in whilst their traditional Grandma Poh Poh is trying to ensure her grandchildren honour their heritage and culture and not be assimilated to their new country A short read.

    23. This book consists of three stories told by three siblings in a Chinese family living in Vancouver s WWII era Chinatown Required reading for Vancouverites, and recommended for anyone who would appreciate a glimpse into a fascinating part of Canadian heritage.

    24. The story of an immigrant family during WWII in Chinatown, Vancouver, BC Told through the eyes of three of the children I enjoyed this book and found it an interesting perspective on how immigrants sometimes feel isolated and not an accepted part of their new Country.

    25. I read this for an English class back in the day I can t do a fair review, but I remember not liking it too much because it was a bit too emo for me.

    26. Gloriously crafted storytelling I found Choy s writing in the voices of three different children convincing and entertaining December 2015 I just re read it again and loved it even .

    27. THE JADE PEONY NOTESPart One Jook Liang, Only Sister Old man visited house in 1933, when she was 5 13 Stepmother barely twenty when she came to Canada, was 7 when bandits killed her family in China 13 Stepmother came to care for Poh Poh, and became son s wife 14 Poh Poh, being one of the few elder women left in Vancouver, took pleasure in her status and became the arbitrator of the old ways 14 In Gold Mountain, simple is best There were, besides, false immigration stories to hide, secrets to be [...]

    28. 3.5 starsThis is one Chinese immigrant family s experience in Vancouver during the late 1930s and into the 1940s during WWII The three youngest children of the family alternate points of view in the first person aging from about 6 to 10 in their individual sections The oldest of the three is Jung who is adopted by the family Liang, the only daughter was born in Canada as was Sekky, the youngest boy The story chronicles their struggles to juggle the old ways that their parents and elderly Grandmo [...]

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