These are what we call the 'YMMV items.' Things that some people find in this work. We call them 'your mileage might vary' because not everyone sees these things in the same way. This starts discussions in the trope lists, a thing we don't want. Please use the discussion page if you'd like to discuss any of these items.
YMMV: The Joy Luck Club
Rounded Character: A specifically-praised aspect of the novel is that it was among the most prominent to portray Chinese-American women as such.
Values Dissonance: Some of the parenting methods from 1920s and 1950s China may seem abusive to a modern audience.
Waverly's homophobic comment about Jing-mei's gay hair stylist: "He could have AIDS. And he is cutting your hair, which is like cutting a living tissue." Granted, we're not really supposed to agree with her, but this reflects an attitude about AIDS which was very common in the 1980s, when the book was written. Only the most virulent homophobes would say something like that now.