‘Fifty Shades of Tan’: Amy Tan

Amy Tan jokingly refers to her forthcoming novel, The Valley of Amazement (Ecco, November) as “Fifty Shades of Tan”; it’s the first of her books to include sex scenes. Given the novel’s subject matter, she didn’t have much of a choice. Over the course of more than two decades and almost 590 pages, Tan follows the lives of a group of courtesans in early-20th-century Shanghai, set against the backdrop of a changing world.

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