‘Dreams of Joy’ – Yet another Lisa See novel!

Hello Dear People!

It’s been rather cold recently, by Pakistan standards of course, and we’ve been bundling up in layers. There is nothing nicer than curling up under a blanket with a good book, especially if its raining outside, though it has yet to rain here. But I do hope it does soon. There’s nothing more annoying than dry sharp cold that settles in your bones. It’s been couple of days and today I return with the next review I promised you, Lisa See’s Dreams of Joy, the sequel to Shanghai Girls by the same author. 

Dreams of Joy is radically different from Shanghai Girls which focuses on Chinese immigrants and their struggle to assimilate within the American society while perpetually living in nostalgia for their lost homeland.However, Dreams of Joy does the complete opposite. It deals instead, with Joy, an immigrants daughter, journeying to China only to discover that her mother’s homeland is not what she imagined it to be. Similarly, Pearl returns to China in an attempt to find her daughter Joy, and discovers that the Shanghai of her youth no longer exists. 

Set against a backdrop of China’s Cultural Revolution and the Great Leap Forward, Dreams of Joy is a novel of identity and motherhood. It highlights Pearl and Joy’s struggle to come to terms with the fact that the homeland they dreamed of returning to is in fact no longer the China that Pearl knew. The story highlights every immigrants dilemma, showing how the traditions and identities that they hold on to while living in a foreign land, continue to evolve into different shapes back in their homeland. 

Dreams of Joy is also a moving description of Mao’s Great Leap Forward and devastating consequences it had for the population of China. Most of all however, it is a story of motherhood and reconciliation between a mother and a daughter. It is the story of the relationship between mothers and daughters with all the conflicts such relationships entails and the fact that none of us can conceive what it means to be a mother until we become one. 

I enjoyed this book greatly and I would recommend it to all of my lovely readers provided of course that they read Shanghai Girls first in order to understand the context of the novel. I hope to see you all again soon. 

Much Love!
The Woman Out of Time

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