Blue Jasmine

Blue Jasmine

5.0 4
by Kashmira Sheth
     
 

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When twelve-year-old Seema Trivedi learns that she and her family must move from their small Indian town to Iowa City, she realizes she'll have to say good-bye to the purple-jeweled mango trees and sweet-smelling jasmine, to the monsoon rains and the bustling market. More important, she must leave behind her best friend and cousin, Raju. Everything is different in

Overview


When twelve-year-old Seema Trivedi learns that she and her family must move from their small Indian town to Iowa City, she realizes she'll have to say good-bye to the purple-jeweled mango trees and sweet-smelling jasmine, to the monsoon rains and the bustling market. More important, she must leave behind her best friend and cousin, Raju. Everything is different in Iowa City, where Seema feels like an outsider to the language and traditions. As she begins to plant roots in the foreign soil, however, her confidence starts to bloom, and she learns she can build a bridge between two homes. With lyrical language and poignant scenes, Kashmira Sheth unearths the meaning of "home" and "family" in this tender debut novel. Kashmira Sheth's own experiences as a teenager who moved by herself from India to America inspired her to write this novel. She is a microbiologist and lives with her family in Madison, Wisconsin.

Kashmira Sheth was born in Bhavanger, Gujart, India and immigrated to the United States at the age of 17. Sheth attended Iowa State University where she received her B.S. in Microbiology. She is married to a civil engineer and they have two daughters. Sheth is both a scientist and an author. Sheth has worked for the Wisconsin Department of Agriculture, Trade and Consumer Protection as a microbiologist. In 2012 she will teach at the Solstice Low-Residency MFA in Creative Writing Program at Pine Manor College. In her free time Sheth teaches Indian dance to children.

"When 12-year-old Seema moves with her parents and younger sister from India to Iowa City, she must leave her grandparents, extended family, and, most distressingly, her cousin Raju, who has been like a brother to her. Seema describes her adjustment to the newness of the U.S.–the food, clothing, weather, education–and her feelings: "I was always the outsider listening in…." Although she makes friends, she also encounters surprising hostility from another newcomer to her class, and ultimately learns the coping skills necessary to deal with this troubled girl. The writing is infused with evocative descriptions: "…the few leaves left clinging to the trees made them look like beggars in ragged clothes" or "the days… stretched out like a sari." Sheth uses Seema's letters to India and a classroom assignment to transmit significant cultural information, but at times this approach takes on a didactic and unnatural air. Still, the narrative advances steadily, with many opportunities for insights into the experience of this new immigrant, plus enough tension introduced through the bully to keep readers interested."
-School Library Journal
–Lee Bock, Glenbrook Elementary School, Pulaski, WI
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

“Filled with details that document an immigrant's observations and experiences, Seema's story, which articulates the ache for distant home and family, will resonate with fellow immigrants and enlighten their classmates.”
Copyright © American Library Association. All rights reserved
-Booklist

Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
PW's starred review said, "In this delicate, introspective debut novel, narrator Seema describes her assimilation to America, capturing the distinct flavors of two different cultures [the U.S. and India]." Ages 9-12. (Apr.) Copyright 2006 Reed Business Information.
Children's Literature
Seema has a wonderful family life and a best friend in her cousin, Raju. Then, the year she is twelve, all these certainties are suddenly shaken when she and her family move to Iowa City. Seema and her little sister, Mela, have to start at a new school, battling the mysteries of the new system and the antagonism of their classmates. Seema cannot forget her house in Vishanagar or her family. But her new home excites her and Seema realizes that she would like to stay on in America. Then her grandmother falls sick and the entire family travels to India to see her. The visit helps Seema put things in perspective and to find the rhythm that will allow her to adjust to life in an alien land. 2004, Hyperion Books for Children, Ages 12 up.
—Nandini Nayar
School Library Journal
Gr 4-7-When 12-year-old Seema moves with her parents and younger sister from India to Iowa City, she must leave her grandparents, extended family, and, most distressingly, her cousin Raju, who has been like a brother to her. Seema describes her adjustment to the newness of the U.S.-the food, clothing, weather, education-and her feelings: "I was always the outsider listening in-." Although she makes friends, she also encounters surprising hostility from another newcomer to her class, and ultimately learns the coping skills necessary to deal with this troubled girl. The writing is infused with evocative descriptions: "-the few leaves left clinging to the trees made them look like beggars in ragged clothes" or "the days- stretched out like a sari." Sheth uses Seema's letters to India and a classroom assignment to transmit significant cultural information, but at times this approach takes on a didactic and unnatural air. Still, the narrative advances steadily, with many opportunities for insights into the experience of this new immigrant, plus enough tension introduced through the bully to keep readers interested.-Lee Bock, Glenbrook Elementary School, Pulaski, WI Copyright 2004 Reed Business Information.
Kirkus Reviews
The comfortable and confident life 12-year-old Seema Trivedi enjoys in her upper-class neighborhood in India is altered by the family's move to an American middle-class suburban community. Everything is new and different for this tween who must adjust to American English, food, dress, culture, and school politics. Seema's classmates in both countries present parallel situations that illustrate the complexities of middle schoolers and their maturation. Mukta, the very poor Indian girl who lives in one room behind the family's snack shop, is constantly teased and misunderstood by both Seema and her cousin Raju. Seema's mistreatment in her American school by the new class bully, Carrie, is an awakening for her as she grows to understand and develop emotionally. Exposed to life in two worlds and from two positions in her peer groups, Seema acquires the ability to appreciate differences as she struggles to belong in both countries. New author Sheth writes from personal experience using descriptive language and a plethora of metaphors to emphasize her protagonist's feelings and view of circumstances and situations. A realistic emigration story told with empathy and sincerity. (glossary) (Fiction. 12-14)
From the Publisher

"When 12-year-old Seema moves with her parents and younger sister from India to Iowa City, she must leave her grandparents, extended family, and, most distressingly, her cousin Raju, who has been like a brother to her. Seema describes her adjustment to the newness of the U.S.–the food, clothing, weather, education–and her feelings: "I was always the outsider listening in…." Although she makes friends, she also encounters surprising hostility from another newcomer to her class, and ultimately learns the coping skills necessary to deal with this troubled girl. The writing is infused with evocative descriptions: "…the few leaves left clinging to the trees made them look like beggars in ragged clothes" or "the days… stretched out like a sari." Sheth uses Seema's letters to India and a classroom assignment to transmit significant cultural information, but at times this approach takes on a didactic and unnatural air. Still, the narrative advances steadily, with many opportunities for insights into the experience of this new immigrant, plus enough tension introduced through the bully to keep readers interested."
-School Library Journal
–Lee Bock, Glenbrook Elementary School, Pulaski, WI
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

“Filled with details that document an immigrant's observations and experiences, Seema's story, which articulates the ache for distant home and family, will resonate with fellow immigrants and enlighten their classmates.”
Copyright © American Library Association. All rights reserved
-Booklist

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780786855650
Publisher:
Disney-Hyperion
Publication date:
04/01/2006
Edition description:
Reprint
Pages:
192
Product dimensions:
5.25(w) x 7.62(h) x 0.50(d)
Lexile:
740L (what's this?)
Age Range:
9 - 12 Years

Meet the Author


Kashmira Sheth was born in Bhavanger, Gujart, India and immigrated to the United States at the age of 17. Sheth attended Iowa State University where she received her B.S. in Microbiology. She is married to a civil engineer and they have two daughters. Sheth is both a scientist and an author. Sheth has worked for the Wisconsin Department of Agriculture, Trade and Consumer Protection as a microbiologist. In 2012 she will teach at the Solstice Low-Residency MFA in Creative Writing Program at Pine Manor College. In her free time Sheth teaches Indian dance to children.

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Blue Jasmine 5 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 2 reviews.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I haven't finished this book yet, but it is amazing!! I've read other books by that author, and enjoyed those too.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago