Kimchi & Calamari
by Rose KentHarperCollins; $15.99
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This new young-adult novel features a believable character grappling with the desire to know more about his birthmother. When our kids develop this normal, healthy curiosity, reading about others who experience the same thing is an excellent way to affirm it.
In Kimchi & Calamari, Korean adoptee Joseph Calderaro is stunned when his teacher hands out the assignment “Tracing Your Past: A Heritage Essay.” What begins as “The I’ve-Got-Nothing-to-Say Korean Heritage Tale” soon turns into “Essaygate,” as Joseph pens a contest-winning essay that’s more fiction than fact. With the help of his best friend, Nash, Joseph discovers some truths about honesty, friendship, and imperfect, but real, families. Rose Kent, the mother of two children adopted from Korea, offers a fast-paced and funny first novel. Boys will appreciate that the main character is male, and girls will develop a crush on him.
Reviewed by Kay Marner, a mother by birth and adoption, who works at the public library in Ames, Iowa.
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