Complete summary of Fae Myenne Ng’s Bone. eNotes plot summaries cover all the significant action of Bone. in Fae Myenne Ng’s Bone. Allen Gee. Georgia College & State University. Bone ( ) is Fae Myenne Ng’s first novel, set largely in San. Francisco’s Chinatown. Fae Myenne Ng’s “Bone” is in this tradition. Its story of an old San Francisco couple and their three grown children gives a sense of the wildness.

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Want to Read Currently Reading Read. Refresh and try again. Open Preview See a Problem? Thanks for telling us about the problem. Return to Book Page. Preview — Bone by Fae Myenne Ng. Bone by Fae Myenne Ng. A profoundly moving journey into San Francisco’s Chinatown that is “brutal and poignant, dreamy and gritty, nf to its place and resonant in its implication about what it means to be an American.

Paperbackpages. Published December 3rd by Harpperen first published January 1st To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up.

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What is the time frame of the events in the book? Philip S This answer contains spoilers… view spoiler [It plays with time, mostly centered around the ‘s up to 10 or 15 years later or so.

Lists with This Book. Dec 30, Julie Ehlers rated it liked it Shelves: Set in San Francisco, Bone is a tale of strained relations between Chinese immigrant parents and their Chinese-American offspring three sisters, one of whom, Leila, is our narrator. Boneto me, is grittier and more vivid, and the characters more real, in both good ways and bad. Meanwhile, in the present day, Leila has eloped with her boyfriend to New York City, and is fa now breaking the news to her parents.

It seemed gimmicky to me at first, and I had my doubts that the gamble would pay off, but for me it did. Jan 11, dianne rated it it was ok Shelves: This is a story written by the eldest daughter of an immigrant Chinese family in San Francisco.

She attempts to please and keep myennee together; imagining – as often oldest children do, that they are responsible for the emotional care and upkeep – of the family – especially in times of crisis. This family sustains the worst kind – the suicide of the middle daughter by jumping off a familiar building. The tenth day of the Chinese New Year. The truth of these images i know.

I was a medical intern, miles away when a sibling chose suicide, i too spent years dreaming of how i could surgically bring him back, sew his pieces back to life, magically catch his free fall – like this sister loving, flailing and completely without answers, dreams of reconstructing her immeasurable loss. This book offers sincerity, a look into the struggles of being the first fresh generation closely tied to an intact and powerful Chinatown or one of several in SF.

There was also a confusing timeline, well, actually no timeline; so we never quite know where the characters stand with each other. I was hoping for more. Nov 17, Ying rated it really nng it Shelves: Going back to China, only a bowl of bitterness to show for his life as a coolie. I know that in pain, pleasure still exists in myenje interstices. But there is too much in this, and too little at the same time. Feb 26, Eli rated it it was ok Shelves: This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers.


To view it, click here. Ng’s writing is stylistically beautiful, vivid and evocative. I wanted to like this book.

And while I favor character-driven fiction over plot-driven, the characters do have to drive something. A book where nothing happens isn’t worth the time. Ng blows her hand by telling us everything in the first few pages; then, when the entire 2nd half of the book is flashback, there’s nothing new to learn.

She sets up the mystery of why Ona jumped and then gives us nothing to go on. An Ng’s writing is stylistically beautiful, vivid and evocative. And the hopeful ending isn’t all that hopeful when we already know what happens after it. At least, I think we do.

Review of Fae Ng’s Bone –

The book operates in 3 different timeframes, and knowing which one we’re in when is devilishly difficult. A frustrating book made moreso by the promise that seems to be wasted. Let me start off by saying Bone by Fae Myenne Ng is a good novel.

The storyline is interesting, the characters are real, and the choice of words Ng uses to convey ideas to the reader are clean and beautiful.

I gave the book 3. This is the story of two generations in a Chinese family in America. At the start of the story, we are old that the middle child, Ona, committed suicide.

That is not a spoiler- that fact literally hits you in the face on the first page, in the first sentence. But Ona is not the only one with issues in this family. Every single one of them has them, and Leila looks back over the years with her family to understand where it all began.

A theme I initially found was the strong desire for the characters to maintain their family. There was the desire to want to impress and feel like family. So there is some character development that is observed later in the novel. Her succinct descriptions of characters, events and locations paint a picture for readers, but at the same time, allow for readers to draw on their own personal experiences to help them understand what is taking place.

One thing I found unique was how Ng allowed readers into some of the personal issues of the characters, and others she left to be private. Some reviewers noted they were turned off by the narration moving forward and then moving back in history with no warning.

I did not have an issue with this and rather saw the transition as a reflection on the current situation. I did not find it distracting, but to each, his own. Nov 15, Hayley rated it really liked it. The patriarch is Leon, who cannot seem to get ahead in the American capitalistic system.

Leon takes odd jobs on ships, consistently changing his geographic location. The three daughters react against their parents in different ways, while the narrator Leila is the most complacent.


Social location in response to physical location is something I would like to consider as a writer. Feb 28, Aishe rated it really liked it Recommends it for: Ng’s first novel really captures the lives of an intergenerational Chinese American family.

Her writing reframes the American dream, complicates it, and reflects more reality than the usual depictions. Feb 18, Mary rated it really liked it Shelves: Excellent novel of a Chinese American family from the view of the second generation first born daughter. The struggles of learning a new language, translating for parents limited English, finding jobs as immigrants and cultural practices all swirl around a tragic incident with the second daughter Ona.

The story is Excellent novel of a Chinese American family from the view of the second generation first born daughter. The story is told in an extremely non-linear fashion that some readers will not care for.

Dec 01, Zoe rated it it was ok. This story is narrated backwards. Seemed kind of gimmicky to me. The novel shows her negotiating between her American upbringing and the expectations of her old-world Chinese parents. When tragedy strikes view spoiler [ her half-sister Ona kills herself hide spoiler ]Leila feels responsible for holding everything together.

Thankfully, she has her super-annoyin This story is narrated backwards.


Thankfully, she has her super-annoyingly-perfect boyfriend Mysnne to help out God, I hated that character Ona’s tragic story is never fully explained; we never get to know her character. I felt jipped when the story was over and I still didn’t know anything about Ona’s character. They say she felt “stuck in the middle. The well-observed descriptions of life in San Fran’s Chinatown are mg the best part about this bonee, but I think those detailed descriptive passages would feel more at home in a journalistic context than a novel.

View all 4 comments. Sep 26, Ellyn Lem rated it really liked it. It was funny to re-read “Bone” for an ethnic literature class that I am teaching, while simultaneously reading Foer’s “Here I am,” which also could be included in this class. While Foer’s novel was bloated with excess, Ng’s work is minimalism as its finest in recounting the story of a second-generation family of girls, living in San Francisco’s Chinatown.

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While students are sometimes put off by the non-linear narrative. Perhaps what I appreciate most about this book is Ng’g bittersweet reflection of her native Chinatown, both its claustrophobic intensity but also the communal devotion and camaraderie among the residents, who work incredibly hard to stay afloat.

The spareness of prose almost has a Haiku feel to it at times, but the story is contemporary in every way–people who are living in two different worlds trying to figure out how to honor the past nb forge an independent life from previous generations.

A loving tribute to her own family, who she has said cannot read the novel due to their limited English, but she knows they are proud nonetheless.

Jul 31, Michelle rated it liked it Shelves: