Friday, November 10, 2017

Book Review and GIVEAWAY: Wait for Me, by An Na {ends 11/17}


I drove home thinking about Ysrael's story. Woke up Suna and helped her into the apartment and could still picture Ysrael's eyes, the jut of his chin. He's lived so many lives, I thought as Suna and I entered our bedroom and got ready for bed. So many lives and I can't even figure out this one.

This book is more of a novella than a novel: it clocks in at 186 pages. Because of that, it was a quick read, and I like that it went between Mina's POV and her sister's, Suna.

Official synopsis:
A teen pretends to be a perfect daughter, but her reality is far darker, in this penetrating look at identity and finding yourself amidst parents’ dreams for you, by Printz Award–winning novelist An Na.

Mina seems like the perfect daughter. Straight A student. Bound for Harvard. Helps out at her family’s dry cleaning store. Takes care of her hearing-impaired little sister. She is her parents’ pride and joy. From the outside, Mina is doing everything right. On the inside, Mina knows the truth. Her perfect-daughter life is a lie. And it isn’t until she meets someone to whom she cannot lie that she’s willing to consider what the truth might mean, and what it will cost. Because Ysrael, the young migrant worker who dreams of becoming a musician and who comes to work for her family, asks Mina the one question that scares her the most: What does she actually want?

I overall liked this book—because of its length, it's a quick read. The prose is well-written, too, so at times it almost feels more like poetry than a novel.

Mina's parents, especially her mother, want her to succeed in life, but as a result, they put too many expectations on her. She's at that period in high school where she is taking standardized tests, like the SATs, and her mother pressures her to do well on them. A local neighborhood boy, Jonathan, is headed to Stanford, and her mother makes her go and retrieve his used SAT prep books. What she doesn't know, though, is that Mina and Jonathan's relationship isn't very solid right now, and it's because of events that recently transpired between them.

At the same time, the family hires a migrant teen, Ysrael, to work at their dry cleaning store, and he and Mina start to become close. Mina also helps care for her younger sister, Suna, who has hearing issues.

The ending of this book is not your typical HEA (Happily Ever After), but I found it to be realistic. I did think it was a bit abrupt, but it may have been a result of the story being so short. If you are the parent of a teen, have ever been a teen (and remember those years well), or like YA literature, you will enjoy this book.

3.5 stars out of 5.
{Click here to purchase}


Enter via the widget below. Giveaway will end on Friday, November 17th, at 11:59pm EST, and winner will be contacted via email the next day and have 24 hours to respond, or an alternate winner will be chosen. 

U.S. residents only, please.

Good luck!

Wait for Me, by An Na


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