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May 10, 2010


Posted by Dana

This past Thursday, my book club got together for our monthly meeting to discuss THE PIANO TEACHER by Janice Y.K. Lee.  There were just four of us this month's and we were split down the middle as to whether or not we liked the book.

pianoteacher.jpgI fell on the positive side with one other woman and I think we both felt the book was compelling and the story interesting enough that it made it a quick read for us.  We both were a little dissatisfied with the ending, but we really liked getting a taste of life in Hong Kong during and after WWII and we both agreed that Trudy was the more interesting character of the three "leads".

The women who didn't like the book, REALLY didn't like it.  I was actually surprised at how strongly they felt about it.  One actually said she hated it and the other just kept rolling her eyes.  They both felt the writing was not good and were especially critical of the dialogue.

I think all of us were confused by Claire's stealing from the Chen's.  We weren't sure what we were supposed to get from it.  And I think we were all also confused about the title.   Claire is the piano teacher and for us she was the least compelling character in the book.

Another point we discussed at length was Will's choice while at the detention camp.  None of us felt that it was the wrong choice and yet it was a decision that tortured him and really changed him after the war.  (Can you tell I'm trying not give anything away?)

The book made for an interesting discussion, as I thought it would.   Have you read it yet?  What did your group think?  Feel free to comment here or email me at [email protected].