I bought this book because I was intrigued to read a book set in my neighbourhood in the 1980s. What did these streets feel like? What was Toronto like?
I ended up getting much more than that. This book is an immigrant story and a reminder of the need for immigrant stories.
Mary is an immigrant from Korea. Her parents pour every ounce of themselves into their store so that their children can have a better life. Mary feels trapped by the store and the expectations of the Korean life her parents want for her. She wants Canadian friends and a white boyfriend. She fights against everything her mother wants until a key events changes the cycle of mothers and daughters.
I really enjoyed this look into a different culture and the crushing expectations that it holds for the characters. It gives me a different view as I walk by the corner stores on Queen Street.
Having recently returned to Canada I also really enjoyed reading a good Canadian book and the story of teenagerhood in Canada.
If anyone reading this review has read the book, please tell me who is Kay???
Sometimes a little YA fiction is called for. I had tried to read a sci fi book for a book club and after reading the first 20 pages multiple times and still didn’t know what was going on. So, I picked up this book. Good choice.
Willowdean is in high school in a small town obsessed with a beauty pageant. She is (or perceives herself to be) overweight, which is her primary identity to herself. Her morbidly obese aunt recently passed away and her mother seems embarrassed by both her deceased sister and her daughter.
Dumplin’ addresses many of the usual issues of YA fiction, but also takes on body shaming and the horrors of being the ‘other’ in high school. The heroine is fierce and finds her voice over the course of the novel.
I really enjoyed this book. It was a great distraction during a busy week. Enjoyable.