Typical American

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Plume, 1992 - Fiction - 296 pages
51 Reviews
"Yefing Chang becomes Ralph Chang in America and begins a hard struggle to achieve the American dream-- a career, a family and a home of his own. In poverty, he succeeds finally to win a doctoral degree, a college position, a happy marriage to Helen, two delightful daughter, and a close reunion with his older sister, Theresa. The dream becomes a nightmare when he meets Grover Ding whose corrupt influence over Ralph and Helen begins to unravel all that the Changs have managed to achieve. This is an honest novel that does not promise happy endings and recognizes the human weaknesses that can destroy a family's stability." Shapiro. Fic for Youth. 3d ed. Followed by 'Mona in the Promised Land.'

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the writing was simple, easy to read. - Goodreads
The writing is terrific--so engaging. - Goodreads
Ending seemed completely random and unresolved. - LibraryThing
The writing is clever, and the characters are vivid. - Goodreads
The plot meanders a bit, though. - Goodreads

Review: Typical American

User Review  - Yvonne - Goodreads

This was the absolute worst book I've ever read. Read full review

Review: Typical American

User Review  - Jeff - Goodreads

Though closer to a beach read than a deeply literary piece, this novel is a great example of the problems with assimilation into American culture. Jen seems to point the novel's antagonism at the ... Read full review


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About the author (1992)

Gish Jen is a writer living in Cambridge, Massachusetts. She is the author of four novels, including Typical American and Mona in the Promised Land. Her most recent novel is World and Town.

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