Joan is Okay by Weike Wang

A quick read and very enjoyable. Joan is a very smart, very good doctor in Manhattan. Being a doctor is her whole life, in fact she describes it as “coming home.” Her actual home is a completely barren apartment prompting someone to say it looked like she’d been robbed or hadn’t moved in yet.  Joan is possibly on the spectrum? (It seems like every book I’ve read this year features someone who is slightly on the autism spectrum.) When her father dies in China she goes there for the funeral, immediately returns, and heads back to work.  Joan is an endearing character. The pandemic is woven in, but it’s not a book about the pandemic, more about identity and grief and family. That all sounds pretty gloomy but I found many moments of quiet humor and found this to be a quick and satisfying book. Nicely written.

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