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Seeing Emily

3.38  ·  Rating Details  ·  139 Ratings  ·  29 Reviews
The stunning new talent, Joyce Lee Wong, delivers a poignant, lyrical novel about the experiences of a Chinese American teenage girl by a stunning new talent.

In the successful style of David Levithan's The Realm of Possibility and Sonya Sones' What My Mother Doesn't Know, this free verse novel introduces readers to sixteen-year-old Emily, one of three Asian students at her
Paperback, 288 pages
Published March 1st 2007 by Harry N. Abrams (first published March 1st 2005)
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Apr 07, 2011 Laura rated it really liked it
Sixteen year old Emily has always done what is expected of her. She works hard, stays out of trouble, and gets along well with her parents. After meeting a new guy at school, Emily decides that like her drawings and paintings, she would like to be a blank canvas, ready to be designed differently. However, when Nick tries to get her to become someone she isn’t, Emily becomes confused as to who she really is. A trip to her parents’ homeland of Taiwan, Emily finds out who she really is.
The beauty
Krista the Krazy Kataloguer
This YA novel centers around Emily Wu, a Chinese American girl, who throughout the story tries to determine when she should be American and when she should be Chinese. Wong clearly portrays the duality of Emily's cultural background and the conflict and misunderstandings it creates in her life. Especially vivid were the scenes with boyfriend Nick and Nick's parents, who apparently either didn't know or didn't care that they were being offensive to Emily with their ignorant remarks. They saw her ...more
Katie Young
Mar 11, 2012 Katie Young rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Katie Young

Emily is a regular high school student in every way except she is Chinese. Although she was born in America, has attended school in America since Kindergarten, and speaks the English language better than her Chinese, she is different. She came to realize exactly who she is through experiences with her friends, parents, and boyfriend. Emily saw who she really was after a visit with family in Taiwan.

This book was written in free verse which works well because Emily is a gif
Sally Kruger
*Book provided by

Most teens struggle to find a place in their family, with their friends, and in the world in general. Emily Wu is in the midst of this struggle.

When she is not at school, Emily is busy helping out at the family's Chinese restaurant. Her parents are strict about how she dresses and where she goes. She longs to have the freedom that many of her fellow teens take for granted.

Just as Emily meets Nick, a seriously cute new student at her school, she is told that s
Jul 04, 2009 Anna rated it it was ok
I expected more. I've developed an interest in poetry recently and I kind of felt like this book was turning me off it again. It's not a really well developed story. I thought there were parts that were good but overall it was just kind of meandering until the last section. The parts with Nick and her girlfriends were all so blah. I skimmed to the ending.

Normally I go ga-ga over second generation immigrants' stories but not this one...
Apr 29, 2014 Judy rated it really liked it
I enjoyed this a lot more than I expected. At the beginning I felt that the line breaks were awkward and it was just sentences that were split up to look like a poem. It wasn't until Emily started working on her mural that I felt the beauty of it start to take shape and unfold.

It's a simplistic story about a Taiwanese-American girl who deals with conflicts with her friends, parents, the two cultures, and also with her first boyfriend. The simplicity about it wasn't bad though because I felt mys
Nov 04, 2013 Cherylann rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: ya, realistic-fiction
Seeing Emily explores a young girl's search for identity. Emily, a high school student, grapples with what it means to be Chinese American. Told in verse, Wong paints a beautiful portrait of a young girl seeking her roots and family at the same time she is forging a modern American identity.
Aug 09, 2014 Ceejay rated it it was amazing
This is one of the most beutifully written books that I've read in a long, long time. We are told the story of a young , first generation Cinese American girl learning to embrace two cultures. I hope this novel has reached more then the YA audience for which it was written. This book is truly a work of art. It's a novel that begs you to embrace the words with which it was written, and appreciate the fact that the beauty of language is not out of style. Do read this novel! Sit back and read a wel ...more
Apr 27, 2011 Ari rated it liked it
Shelves: read-in-2011
The most unsatisfactory element of the book is Emily's relationship with Nick. I don't know if part of the problem was the fact that the novel was in free-verse and so I felt as though there was less dialogue but I wasn't buying their relationship. A transfer student, a year older than Emily, sees her suddenly in the hallway and decides to be extra friendly? Emily describes herself as plain (I no longer have the book so no exact quotes) and I think their relationship would have been more plausib ...more
Brianna C.
Mar 09, 2011 Brianna C. rated it really liked it
Emily is a teenager whose parents own a Chinese restaurant and loves to paint. Her mom always used to paint with her but now is always very busy. I think that we can all relate to that some way or another. Whether it is our parents own a restaurant and never have time for us or if they are always working. I feel that I can relate to this book because my dad works during the days and always travels. When my dad is home, he is always doing something else or is tired. My mom on the other hand work ...more
Jun 10, 2015 Christina rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I think this was a great book! I just wish that there was a sequel!!
Mar 15, 2015 Ashley rated it liked it
3.45 :)
Sep 06, 2008 Tracy rated it really liked it
At first I wasn't sure about the free verse but I came to appreciate the way it provided an interesting opportunity for rich description. I enjoyed reading about Emily's day to day experiences navigating family life and the high school social scene. I was particularly moved by the author's discussion of Emily's artistic work as well as the exploration of the challenges Emily faced as a Chinese American.
Sep 16, 2008 Lisa rated it really liked it
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
May 11, 2010 Chelsea rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: 9th graders and up
This was a beautiful peice. While it is written in poetry it is wonderful in immage and plot. I do think at points it was sterotypical and cleche it was a cute read. The charecter was wonderfully developed but i wanted to konw more about her family and thier thoughts since they played such a part in the book.
Apr 29, 2013 Sonia rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I thought the story was really good and I really enjoy reading this book and I also thought it was a very quick read I would recommend this book if u like quick reads. :)
Jul 23, 2008 Taija marked it as to-read
IRA Lee Bennett Hopkins Award: given every 3 years to a promising new author of poetry for young people
Nov 10, 2012 Jami rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Lovely language, beautiful images, interesting culture, rather thin story.
Freddy Tagalog
Jun 08, 2012 Freddy Tagalog rated it liked it
Poem-like novel is catchy, but too bold for a story.
Aug 24, 2010 Daddysprincessbanana rated it it was amazing
this was such a good book, i highly recomend it!
Andi Bo Bandi
Mar 28, 2008 Andi Bo Bandi rated it it was amazing
very cute book.
i could not put it down!
Seeing Emily by Joyce Lee Wong (2005)
Crystal Money
Jun 18, 2009 Crystal Money rated it it was amazing
Beautifully written metaphors.
Mar 25, 2009 Mindy rated it liked it
It's in verse!!! yay!
Aug 18, 2008 Emily rated it liked it
Boring- don't read it
Faith Bradham
Mar 18, 2010 Faith Bradham rated it it was ok
Shelves: poetry
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Apr 07, 2008 Amber rated it it was amazing
love it
Chayanee Sukkun
Chayanee Sukkun marked it as to-read
Jun 23, 2016
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