Happy Birthday or Whatever

Happy Birthday or Whatever

4.7 12
by Annie Choi
     
 

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Meet Annie Choi. She fears cable cars and refuses to eat anything that casts a shadow. Her brother thinks chicken is a vegetable. Her father occasionally starts fires at work. Her mother collects Jesus trading cards and wears plaid like it's a job. No matter how hard Annie and her family try to understand one another, they often come up hilariously short.

Overview

Meet Annie Choi. She fears cable cars and refuses to eat anything that casts a shadow. Her brother thinks chicken is a vegetable. Her father occasionally starts fires at work. Her mother collects Jesus trading cards and wears plaid like it's a job. No matter how hard Annie and her family try to understand one another, they often come up hilariously short.

But in the midst of a family crisis, Annie comes to realize that the only way to survive one another is to stick together . . . as difficult as that might be. Annie Choi's Happy Birthday or Whatever is a sidesplitting, eye-opening, and transcendent tale of coping with an infuriating, demanding, but ultimately loving Korean family.

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780061847677
Publisher:
HarperCollins Publishers
Publication date:
10/13/2009
Sold by:
HARPERCOLLINS
Format:
NOOK Book
Pages:
256
Sales rank:
1,000,023
File size:
469 KB

Meet the Author

Annie Choi was born and raised in Los Angeles's San Fernando Valley. A graduate of the University of California, Berkeley, and Columbia University, she lives in New York City.

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Happy Birthday or Whatever: Track Suits, Kim Chee, and Other Family Disasters 4.8 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 12 reviews.
Guest More than 1 year ago
I love this book! It was so funny. I got hooked into this book so fast that I read the whole book in one sitting! I loved how her mother would talk in third person like on page 76 when she's talking to Anne about how Korean isn't easy she says 'Oh so easy, mommy can do this one-' This book was hilarious and then at parts it was so sad. I recomend this book to any age group. I am 13 and this book was the best book I have ever read. I could relate so much like about her stuffed animals and her mother being so hard on her about the spelling bee. The best book. I recommend it to the highest level.
Guest More than 1 year ago
Choi has a sharp contemporary wit. It's a good and entertaining read about the awkward moments growing up as a cultural hybrid 'which there are few good books of'. Choi has a definitive and unique voice peppered wtih sarcasm, but also shows moments of vulnerability and self criticism.
Lovz-Books More than 1 year ago
Two words can only describe this book: Funny and Sarcastic. Annie Choi compiles a wonderful collection of short stories about growing up and family dysfunction. In “Spelling Bee,” we learn how little Annie must prove to her Korean mother that she won’t end up in the street holding a sign that reads “Will Werk for Food.” In “Stroke Order,” Annie tries to “[reclaim] the language she once knew and then forgot and then rejected.” (pg. 75) The family was absolutely hilarious when they tell Annie to only bring home the man she’s going to marry, which then indirectly sabotages any relationship she ever has. If you like Las Niñas: A Collection of Childhood Memories by Sarah Rafael Garcia, then you’ll love this Korean version of it, which is filled with powerful and gripping stories that make you feel right at home—after all, “in the end…we are family and we should spend time together, even if it kills us.” (pg. 213)
KANYEONRIN More than 1 year ago
I CHAEG-EUN NEOMU JAEMISSDA :-)
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Such a funny, yet wonderful peek at Chou's family. You can hear her mother and father's voice so clearly...including their Korean influenced inflections. I loved it!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
What a great book Annie!!! my husband is Korean and his life resembles Annie's life so much. I think all the Korean kids had to deal with the same growing pains. And Korean parents are all the same! My husband's mother's dream was for him to become a "doctor, engineer" (whatever that means). this book is much better than all the Korean soap opera's I've seen.
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Guest More than 1 year ago
I couldn't put this book down in spite of my reservations about reading in on the bus or in other public places -- I was laughing out loud so often that fellow bus riders would inch away from me. The narrator is observant without gazing at her navel. It's rare to find a book about immigrant families that aren't 'woe is me' or 'no one understands me.' This one is neither. If you like Sedaris, you'll love this book.
Guest More than 1 year ago
This book made me laugh out loud. Choi's view of her family and her relationship with her mother, especially, is scathing, honest, loving, and amused. Her story is specific, but any mother or daughter will be able to relate to the dynamics with which the book concerns itself. An impressive debut.