I recently read Kelly Yang’s Front Desk, a book which won the 2019 Asia/Pacific American Award for Literature.
Front Desk is a story about Mia Tang, a 10-year-old girl whose family immigrated from China to America and the challenges that come with living in a new country. Aspiring to be a writer and even a motel owner, Mia wants to feel like she belongs. She experiences many difficulties including navigating a new school and environment, being stereotyped, and feeling the need to hide her immigration status. But that isn't even half of it, there are even more! With all these challenges, will she do it all?
I think the book is amazing. It kept me busy during the quarantine. Mia’s character in Front Desk resonates with me because we both have migrant parents who had a hard time adjusting when first arriving in America. I can relate to Mia’s struggle with careers as she was also 10 and trying to determine what path she should pursue. Also, people's words would trouble her which, in turn, would also trouble her family. I faced similar problems. Front Desk made me experience a wide range of emotions. It made me happy, sad, and angry. What I liked the most about this book is that it was based on the author's childhood and how she lived. It was also interesting picturing the story in my mind and feeling like I was part of it.
I would recommend Front Desk because it connects with the reader. The book is very emotionally charged, which is what intrigues the reader and makes it such a good book to read. The suggested age for reading this book is between eight and 12 years old but I think older readers would also enjoy it.
Front Desk is not just an awesome and magnificent read, but it is also one of a series. The second book, titled Three Keys, is also about Mia; in this book, she faces even more challenges. She wants to help her friend, Lupe, who is going through a hard time. A new law in California is adversely affecting immigrants, and Lupe and her family are experiencing much more racism. The third book, which recently came out, is called Room To Dream. I have not yet read the third book, but I expect it to be both awesome and surprising just as Front Desk and Three Keys. I really hope Front Desk interests you and that you consider reading it.