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Amy Tan
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Amy Tan

Biography
(1952–)
  • Publish date:
Amy Tan is a Chinese American novelist who wrote the New York Times-bestselling novel 'The Joy Luck Club.'

Who Is Amy Tan?

Amy Tan is a Chinese American writer and novelist. In 1985, she wrote the story "Rules of the Game," which was the foundation for her first novel The Joy Luck Club. The book explored the relationship between Chinese women and their Chinese-American daughters. It received the Los Angeles Times Book Award and was translated into 25 languages.

Early Life and Education

Tan was born on February 19, 1952, in Oakland, California. Tan grew up in Northern California, but when her father and older brother both died from brain tumors in 1966, she moved with her mother and younger brother to Europe, where she attended high school in Montreux, Switzerland. She returned to the United States for college, attending Linfield College in Oregon, San Jose City College, San Jose State University, the University of California at Santa Cruz and the University of California at Berkeley.

'The Joy Luck Club'

After college, Tan worked as a language development consultant and as a corporate freelance writer. In 1985, she wrote the story "Rules of the Game" for a writing workshop, which formed the early foundation for her first novel The Joy Luck Club. Published in 1989, the book explored the relationship between Chinese women and their Chinese American daughters and became the longest-running New York Times bestseller for that year. The Joy Luck Club received numerous awards, including the Los Angeles Times Book Award. It has been translated into 25 languages, including Chinese, and in 1993, it was made into a major motion picture for which Tan co-wrote the screenplay.

Other Books

Tan's other two books, The Kitchen God's Wife (1991) and The Hundred Secret Senses (1995), have also appeared on the New York Times bestseller list. Her more recent novels include The Bonesetter's Daughter (2001), Saving Fish From Drowning (2005) and The Valley of Amazement (2013). Tan has also written two children's books: The Moon Lady (1992) and Sagwa, the Chinese Siamese Cat (1994), the latter of which was adapted for television.

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Personal Life

Tan has been married to her husband, Lou DeMattei, for over twenty years. They live in San Francisco and New York.

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