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Novel Pairings

May 5, 2020

Today Chelsey and Sara are chatting about The Joy Luck Club by Amy Tan. We’re discussing iconic literary mothers and the depiction of motherhood in Amy Tan’s debut novel. Plus, we talk about the blurred lines between Tan’s fiction and her real life and which characters really captured our attention. Our discussion includes:


  •  Our love for novels told in short stories that all tie together [9:50]
  •  Approaching texts from cultures different from our own, as teachers and readers [11:42]
  •  The beautiful theme of female friendship depicted along with complex mother-daughter relationships [27:42]


Plus, as always, we’re recommending six contemporary books to pair with our classic include a and a YA graphic novel and a 2019 Booker Prize winner.


Today’s episode is brought to you by, the only audiobook company that allows you to purchase audiobooks directly from your favorite indie bookstore. You can get THREE audiobooks for $15 by clicking this link or by using code NOVELPAIRINGS at checkout.


Books Mentioned:


The Disappearing Earth by Julia Phillips

Homegoing by Yaa Gyasi


Chelsey’s Pairings:


The Astonishing Color of After by Emily X.R. Pan [42:38]

American Born Chinese by Gene Luen Yang [49:20]

Everything Here is Beautiful by Mira T. Lee [56:06]


Sara’s Pairings:


Celestial Bodies by Jokha Alharthi [39:16]

Girl Woman Other by Bernardine Evaristo [45:19]

Interior Chinatown by Charles Yu [52:51]


Shop all the books from this week's episode:


Picks of the Week:

Ugly Delicious on Netflix

Minor Feelings by Cathy Park Hong