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Customer Reviews for

Girl in Translation

Average Rating 4
( 244 )
Rating Distribution

5 Star

(119)

4 Star

(72)

3 Star

(34)

2 Star

(14)

1 Star

(5)

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Most Helpful Favorable Review

11 out of 14 people found this review helpful.

Great Coming-of-Age Story

This is a nice coming-of-age story. It's also a debut novel but sure does not read like this is the author's first novel. Kimberly Chang and her mother immigrate from Hong Kong to New York to what they hope will be a better life. However, they are sponsored by Kimberly'...
This is a nice coming-of-age story. It's also a debut novel but sure does not read like this is the author's first novel. Kimberly Chang and her mother immigrate from Hong Kong to New York to what they hope will be a better life. However, they are sponsored by Kimberly's aunt and uncle who put them to work in their sweatshop as repayment for their trip to America. They are put up in an abandoned apartment building owned by the aunt and uncle. They live in squalor among roaches and rats with the oven providing the only heat in the apartment. It doesn't take Kimberly long to realize the only way out of their situation is through her education. Kimberly studies hard and is given a scholarship to a top school where she excels. Kimberly, who is quite mature for her age, is caught up between the world of poverty in which she lives and the world of her classmates, who mostly come from well to do families. She struggles to keep her life at home a secret from her classmates.

I really appreciated the relationship between Kimberly and her mother. They both counted on each other to survive. When life took a bad turn they were really there for each other.

I liked this book a lot. It wasn't a rosy coming-of-age story like one might think it would be. I could feel the struggles, pride, and heartbreak that Kimberly and her mother both must have felt. I highly recommend this book!

posted by retromom on May 11, 2010

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Most Helpful Critical Review

3 out of 4 people found this review helpful.

Not Worth the Money

I was intrigued by the jacket synopsis of this book and the book cover. The story was interesting, I finished it in two days, but there was no emotion, no splashes of color, it seemed almost a monotone recital of Kim's life. At the end I felt disappointed that there was...
I was intrigued by the jacket synopsis of this book and the book cover. The story was interesting, I finished it in two days, but there was no emotion, no splashes of color, it seemed almost a monotone recital of Kim's life. At the end I felt disappointed that there wasn't more...something to make me smile about a remembered passage, something to help me remember why I read it. Certainly not worth the $$ in these economic times.

posted by mysteriesformeCA on August 24, 2010

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  • Anonymous

    Posted May 16, 2011

    Really Terrible - poorly written, predictable & sets many bad examples for teens

    Pot smoking, "fooling around" with boys that are just friends. premarital sex, having a baby without telling the father so she could still still finish medical school??? ... this was a book that was recommended for my 15 year old & I'm glad I didn't let her read it. "Kimberly" is so brilliant as not to be a believable character, and "Aunt Paula" is so evil she is cliche. Oh, the references to the "lack of diversity" at the private prep school were ridiculous, too. YAWN. This book is a waste of time.

    0 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted February 10, 2011

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  • Anonymous

    Posted December 10, 2010

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 13, 2011

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  • Anonymous

    Posted April 6, 2011

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