Friday, March 25, 2016

Friday memes: Unidentified Suburban Object by Mike Jung

Book Beginnings is hosted by Rose City Reader and Friday 56 is hosted by Freda's Voice.

Unidentified Suburban Object by Mike Jung. 265 p. Arthur A. Levine Books/ Scholastic Inc., April 26, 2016. 9780545

Publisher synopsis: The next person who compares Chloe Cho with famous violinist Abigail Yang is going to HEAR it. Chloe has just about had it with people not knowing the difference between someone who's Chinese, Japanese, or Korean. She's had it with people thinking that everything she does well -- getting good grades, winning first chair in the orchestra, et CETera -- are because she's ASIAN.

Of course, her own parents don't want to have anything to DO with their Korean background. Any time Chloe asks them a question they change the subject. They seem perfectly happy to be the only Asian family in town. It's only when Chloe's with her best friend, Shelly, that she doesn't feel like a total alien.

Then a new teacher comes to town: Ms. Lee. She's Korean American, and for the first time Chloe has a person to talk to who seems to understand completely. For Ms. Lee's class, Chloe finally gets to explore her family history. But what she unearths is light-years away from what she expected.

First line: The recipe for Korean dumplings on the K-Chow Goddess's blog has a picture of her dumplings after they've been made but before they've been cooked, and they look so good you can practically smell them.

Page 56: 
     "I mean, why don't you ever talk about Korea? I ask you stuff and you totally ignore me!"
     Dad stopped, still facing away from me, and put his hands on his hips. He blew out a long breath, turned around, pulled the stepladder away from the loach tank, and sat on it.
     "Aren't parents supposed to be happy when their kids want to talk about stuff like this? Why aren't you happy??" I crossed my arms. The apron made a plasticky crinkle sound against my chest.
      "Chloe, I'm happy, honestly. And I'm not trying to ignore you, it's just..."
     "It's just that you ARE."
      It's not that simple, honey. Talking about's complicated, and painful."
     "So what? I'm not in kindergarten, you know."


  1. I love that cover. Keep meaning to check this out. The trials of a younger person talking to their parents can be so frustrating:)

    My Friday 56

  2. Hmm? Sounds like some family secrets. I'm spotlighting Stone Field by Christy Lenzi on my YA blog this week. Happy reading!

  3. Sounds like it touches on a lot of issues young people have to face due to stereotyping. It has an interesting cover making me want to know more. Thanks for sharing. Happy Friday!

  4. Oh this sounds interesting. I'm really interested in family history and there's so much that gets lost because people don't talk about it for whatever reason. I love the idea of exploring this. I'm adding this to my TBR.

  5. Sounds like a fun read. The beginning made me hungry for dumplings. :-) Happy Easter weekend!