Saturday, January 22, 2011

Bitter Melon

Author: Cara Chow

Summary: Frances has one job in life. To get into Berkeley and become a doctor so that her mother's ambitions for her will be realized. And Frances doesn't think there's anything wrong with that--until the day she accidentally steps into a speech class.

Frances turns out to be a natural at debate and public speaking. But to win in competition, France's needs to say things she really believes--and to hide what she's doing from her mother. And once Frances steps out beyond her narrowly prescribed life, she begins to question many things about the way she is raised. Frances knows she must be obedient to her mother, who has sacrificed so much for her education. But how much is Frances living out the life her mother wants her to have, instead of the life that's right for Frances?

Review: The cover is really pretty and I think it mostly reflects the story. There isn't a huge amount of books about American Born Chinese, so that's why I mainly picked up this book.

Juggling with two cultures is becoming an increasingly common thing now that the US has so many different types of people in one place, but it can be very difficult for some people like Frances. She knows her mother wants what is best for her, but this means sacrificing Frances' care freeness and happiness.

The voice was strong while the storyline was weaved seamlessly. The writing flowed and overall it was an interesting read which is based in the real world.

Rating: 1 2 3 3.5 4 5


  1. I really liked this book because it dealt with emotional/verbal abuse which is not something I read about very often. The writing was really good too, it did flow along.

    I didn't understand why the book was set in the '80s though unless it was just to make frances' life harder.

  2. That's definitely true. Most books about abuse tend to talk about physical and physical isn't the only kind. I'm not really sure, but to me it felt like it was written in the present or could apply now at least.

    Thanks for reading my review! :)


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