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Girl in Translation By Jean Kwok Girl in Translation Introducing a fresh exciting Chinese American voice an inspiring debut about an immigrant girl forced to choose between two worlds and two futures When Kimberly Chang and her mother emigrate from Ho
  • Title: Girl in Translation
  • Author: Jean Kwok
  • ISBN: 9781594487569
  • Page: 236
  • Format: Hardcover
  • Girl in Translation By Jean Kwok Introducing a fresh, exciting Chinese American voice, an inspiring debut about an immigrant girl forced to choose between two worlds and two futures.When Kimberly Chang and her mother emigrate from Hong Kong to Brooklyn squalor, she quickly begins a secret double life exceptional schoolgirl during the day, Chinatown sweatshop worker in the evenings Disguising the diIntroducing a fresh, exciting Chinese American voice, an inspiring debut about an immigrant girl forced to choose between two worlds and two futures.When Kimberly Chang and her mother emigrate from Hong Kong to Brooklyn squalor, she quickly begins a secret double life exceptional schoolgirl during the day, Chinatown sweatshop worker in the evenings Disguising the difficult truths of her life like the staggering degree of her poverty, the weight of her family s future resting on her shoulders, or her secret love for a factory boy who shares none of her talent or ambition Kimberly learns to constantly translate not just her language but herself back and forth between the worlds she straddles.Through Kimberly s story, author Jean Kwok, who also emigrated from Hong Kong as a young girl, brings to the page the lives of countless immigrants who are caught between the pressure to succeed in America, their duty to their family, and their own personal desires, exposing a world that we rarely hear about Written in an indelible voice that dramatizes the tensions of an immigrant girl growing up between two cultures, surrounded by a language and world only half understood, Girl in Translation is an unforgettable and classic novel of an American immigrant a moving tale of hardship and triumph, heartbreak and love, and all that gets lost in translation.
    Girl in Translation By Jean Kwok

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      Jean Kwok

    About "Jean Kwok"

    1. Jean Kwok

      Jean Kwok is the New York Times and international bestselling author of the award winning novels Girl in Translation and Mambo in Chinatown Her work has been published in 18 countries and taught in universities, colleges and high schools across the world She has been selected for many honors including the American Library Association Alex Award, the Chinese American Librarians Association Best Book Award, and Barnes and Noble Discover Great New Writers Jean s writing has been featured in Time, The New York Times, USA Today, Newsweek, The Chicago Tribune, Entertainment Weekly, Vogue, People, Real Simple and O, The Oprah Magazine, among others Jean immigrated from Hong Kong to Brooklyn when she was five and worked in a Chinatown clothing factory for much of her childhood while living in an unheated, roach infested apartment In between her undergraduate degree at Harvard and MFA in fiction at Columbia, she worked for three years as a professional ballroom dancer Jean lives in the Netherlands with her husband, two boys and three cats, and is working on her next novel A Dutch television documentary with English subtitles was filmed about Jean and her work Learn about Jean here jeankwokfacebook JeanKwokAuthor

    635 thoughts on “Girl in Translation”

    1. You probably don t want to listen to my rating, because I m just a bit biased However, I d like to thank everyone who s posted here Whether you love the book or hate it doesn t matter, I m just glad you ve taken the time to read it.

    2. I ve never read a book that described accurately what it is like to be an Asian American immigrant.It s like Ms Kwok took pieces of my own experience growing up in a cockroach infested apartment with parents scraping by by working multiple menial jobs , and lines lifted from my friends stories calling an eraser a rubber, telling parents report cards came out only at the end of the year and merged them with a thrilling and thoroughly absorbing story.The novel takes the Chinese immigrant experien [...]

    3. 4.5 I read Girl in Translation by Jean Kwok at a time when I read little fiction I found the book at one of my favorite places the check out counter at the library and grabbed it because of its vivid colored cover In this debut novel, Kwok tells the story of Kimberly Chang and her mother, immigrants from Hong Kong to Brooklyn Forced to live in a condemned apartment and work in horrid conditions because their sponsor, Kimberley s aunt, feels as though they are burden on society, Kimberly grows up [...]

    4. I m very hesitant to review this book, mostly because I m not quite sure how to put to words what it is that reading this has made me feel.It is at once both very familiar, and yet completely foreign The Cantonese, the way that the author translates the slang and the phrases, the cultural traditions, the deeply embedded lifestyle that is Chinese pride and saving facewhen I read about that, it was like something sparked in my blood This part, I understand, and I have lived.But then there s the fa [...]

    5. This was such a delightful read that I put off all the other things I was supposed to be doing today and read it in one sitting It is Saturday after all and I think I deserved a treat It is a wonderful tale of a Chinese mother and daughter who migrate to America and find it not to be the land of plenty they had dreamed of I thought the author handled it perfectly in particular the way she presents the daughter s struggle with the English language However smart she is, however hard she tries ther [...]

    6. I ve been in a really weird place with books lately Over the past weeks I ve read a lot of books and so far no one has been affective enough to motivate me to go raving I m on what you can refer to as the eternal hunt But what can I say I read Girl in Translation after reading Nina s little convincing review which you can read here if you like Thank you Nina Now while Girl in Translation didn t really ensorcell me, it did do something The story of Kimberly Ah Kim Chang is a very honest one, the [...]

    7. Somehow, I managed to finish this book, though I complained about it the entire time I know, my own fault, I should have shut up or stopped reading it I could not understand the rave reviews about it and couldn t fathom that people had read the same book that I was reading until I realized a consistent flaw in how we review both books and film too often, people are praising the story itself rather than the telling of the story Which is what I believe happened with this book I suffered through th [...]

    8. Remember the popular song in the 90s, It s a Hard Knock Life That song kept popping into my head as I read this novel For Kimberly, a Chinese immigrant residing in the slums of Brooklyn, it s a hard knock life indeed Her mother and her come from Hong Kong when Kimberly is approximately eleven years of age and fully dependent on Aunt Paula, a jealous relative, they find themselves living intimately with roaches and rats in a garbage bag in place of windows, illegal apartment with no heat or air W [...]

    9. An insightful debut about immigration, hardship, and striving for education and success against all odds, enveloped by a tentative love story.Threre s a Chinese saying that the fates are winds that blow through our lives from every angle, urging us along the paths of time Those who are strong willed may fight thestorm and possibly choose their own road, while the weak must go where they are blown I say I have not been so much pushed by winds as pulled forward by the force of my decisions.Girl in [...]

    10. In person book club read 2 I liked this debut overall I came off it feeling a message that family is there to help with the big life changing events, but when it comes to day to day survival, ya gotta have friends, as Bette Midler would say.It is told from the perspective of Kimberly, fresh off the boat with her mother from Hong Kong, and placed by her aunt evil woman in a condemned NYC apartment with no heat but plenty of cockroaches and rats Neither spoke much English, but Kimberly s spunk and [...]

    11. I see I m against the grain here, but I was not into this book AT ALL I read it for my Kinshasa book club if not for that I would have stopped halfway through The story is the most average, unsurprising coming of age tale I have ever read The fact that the girl grows up working in a sweat shop would have been shocking if I was as naive as the main character s best friend, Annette And the love of her life made no sense She kept calling him beautiful, talked about what a wonderful person he was, b [...]

    12. This was a really good read A mom and daughter immigrate to America and endure hardships working in a sweatshop owned by a relative It s about a girl who is smart as a whip who is finding her way to save her and her mother by getting an education It s a story of survival Good character development and an interesting perspective Unbelievable that such conditions did exist I think her story is one of many stories of these immigrants who were taken advantage of and didn t have the knowledge or cour [...]

    13. Ive read this book twice now, once on my own and several years later for book group Both times I had the same experience I just love the first half of so when she is younger and they are struggling to learn English and American ways As she assimilates I find my attention moving to anger at the heartless aunt who has them in virtual bondage, living in a condemned building without heat, working 12 or hours a day Kim is a hard working student struggling to balance her school and economic demands, [...]

    14. I should probably bring this book down to a 3 for how terrible the end is And clearly the characterizations of everyone except our narrator are fairly unsubtle But I was completely engrossed in the details of this story of growing up dreadfully poor in Brooklyn a generation ago, a Tree Grows in Brooklyn for the late 20th Century Kwok s tale really grabs you, and if you have a hard time crediting some of the details, the deeper unease is with the undeniable fact that the world she portrays piecew [...]

    15. When Kimberly Chang and her mother emigrate from Hong Kong to America, they are forced to reside in a cheap Brooklyn apartment with no heating and a copious amount of mice and roaches To survive their horrible living conditions and financial struggles Kimberly works with her mother at a sweatshop in the afternoon while attending school in the daytime Despite her initial inability to speak English, Kimberly works her way up to the top of the class in order to secure a better life But when she mee [...]

    16. This was a super sweet story about a subject I can t get enough of a mother and daughter starting their life in America after immigrating from China It is told from the daughter s perspective, Kim, and covers the sacrifices her mother made to bring her to New York, the abysmal and illegal living situations they endured, and their ultimate triumph This is a quick read, but I took my time listening to the audiobook performance during my lunch break walks I particularly enjoyed the voice of young K [...]

    17. 4.5 stars I really liked this book, a lot Hence how I was able to finish it in a single sitting It was very interesting The story revolves around an Chinese mother daughter duo s immigration from Hong Kong to New York The book focuses on the experiences of culture clash, isolation and all the other difficulties they go through to adapt to the strange new world they find themselves in Perhaps I resonated with this so strongly because both of my parent s were immigrants, it was because of their ex [...]

    18. Girl in Translation is the story of Kimberly Chang, an eleven year old girl who arrives in Brooklyn from Hong Kong with her widowed mother Their immigration has been arranged and paid for by Aunt Paula, her mother s older sister They are hopeful and why not America is the country where dreams come true.Every novel needs a villain and here it s Aunt Paula who takes on the role Having paid for bringing her sister and niece to America, she now feels they owe her total obedience for the rest of thei [...]

    19. I was loving and enjoying this book, but the last 1 4th of the book I felt like Jean Kwok changed Kimberly s personality, and she was even trying to change Matt into a jerk by he not wanting Kim to finish her goals and then Vivians Is this so the book could end in a typical politically correct feminist way After Kim almost having an abortion which I would have given the book a 1 star over , she selfishly withheld her child of having a really great and involved father who was in love with her and [...]

    20. While looking at the upcoming release from Jean Kwok, I went back to my review and decided to update it I have increased the rating from 4 to 5 stars as this is one of a few novels that has stayed with me a couple of years after reading.I actually obtained this book for my wife as it was on a top twenty books a woman should read list Having found it on such a list, I assumed that it would be some form of chick lit Needing something to read and finding the synopsis to be interesting, I read it be [...]

    21. I was very impressed with this book It teaches important life lessons, such as the amount of money you have or earn doesn t define who you are as a person This is shown throughout the book as Kim and her mom make nearly pennies a day but continue to be very positive people and it doesn t stop Kim from her school studies It was a very easy story to follow and readers never knew what was going to happen next There are few reviews about this book on , but all of them are positive and the readers en [...]

    22. I liked this book I didn t love it, but I did enjoy it Should you read it Yes, if you get it free or for a couple dollars.

    23. Sometimes our fate is different from the one we imagined for ourselves Jean Kwok has managed to create an interesting and eye opening read out of an experience that so many American immigrants have experienced within their lives Kimberly and her mother s story is honest, shameless, and wholesome As a child of immigrant parents, I found myself being able to relate to Kimberly on multiple levels despite being born in America There s so much truth to Kimberly s story, and I loved reading her experi [...]

    24. I m not sure why this book has garnered such buzz and great reviews The writing is straightforward and easy to read, but far from being literature This book seems to belie the fact the author has an MFA in fiction, or perhaps this is all it takes to get an MFA in fiction from Columbia these days I don t know Perhaps the book should have been categorized as YA since it seems to have been written for an eighth grade reading level I was especially annoyed by the use of italics to start each new tho [...]

    25. I bought this because I enjoy immigrant fiction it often gives interesting insights into American or British life, and I m an immigrant myself And for about two thirds of this book, I was not disappointed But then Ah Kim Kimberly turns into a teenager She s been granted a full scholarship at an exclusive New York secondary school despite living in an appalling slum with her widowed mother who works all the hours God sends in a garment sweatshop in Chinatown run by her elder sister and brother in [...]

    26. I had a hard time giving this book a rating I keep going between and 2 and 3 I loved the first 85% of it and then hated the rest I found the trials and perseverance of Kimberly and her mother very profound and it makes you grateful for the blessings you have SPOILER I can t get over the dishonesty and immorality involved in the ending of the book To have someone s child and not even tell them about it is disgusting and disgraceful It ruined the character and the entire book for me That she would [...]

    27. Dijelom autobiografska, ovo je pri a o djevoj ici koja je primorana, nakon smrti oca, iz svog rodnog grada Hong Konga, zajedno s majkom, preseliti se u Ameriku, u bolji ivot.Govore i o problemima imigranata, posebno onih koji su u SAD pristigli iz dalekih isto nih zemalja, vidimo da je siroma tvo tek jedan od problema s kojima se ti ljudi susre u Puno ve i im je problem, u biti, golemi jaz izme u isto ne i zapadne kulture, velike pote ko e u u enju posve druga ijeg jezika i op enito prilagodbe p [...]

    28. Weird and disappointing to have the exact same reaction to two consecutive novels both on s list of best books of 2010, incidentally the story had potential, but was told way too superficially Only this book was actually less enjoyable for me than Secret Daughter, the last book I read.I felt like I d read this story many times before Eleven year old Kimberly emigrates from Hong Kong to the U.S with her impoverished widowed mother in seek of a better life the two struggle with adversity in the fo [...]

    29. This book really opened my eyes to the hardships of many immigrant experiences and having to work at horrible sweatshop factories We hear about harsh treatment so often on the news and documentaries that sometimes I feel I may be desensitized from the stories, seeing an image of horror I cannot really understand But Jean Kwok portrays the experience through daily episodes that blend the harshness that can be hard to believe with the mundane, and this way really emphasizes the reality part of the [...]

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