Tan’s Joy Luck Club

“Over the years, she told me the same story, except for the ending, which grew darker, casting long shadows into her life, and eventually into mine.”

Aren’t you curious what comes next? I read Amy Tan’s The Joy Luck Club many years ago but remember it for sentences like this in which family mysteries unfold and layers are peeled back. A story need not be a suspense, chapters need not end in cliff hangers. In the hands of a good storyteller, the reader is compelled to keep reading. I think this sentence is strong because Tan punctuates it with “mine,” making us wonder what shadows reach into her life. What non-suspense books couldn’t you put down?

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