Amy's Reviews > Good Enough

Good Enough by Paula Yoo
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's review
Feb 25, 11

Recommended for: seniors in high school
Read on February 25, 2011

My friend Sara said that after watching the last episode of the final season of Hannah Montana, she just wanted to sit there and cry.
That is how I felt after reading this book.
Bitter-sweet. Half happy half sad. And it has nothing to do with the actual ending, or if I liked the characters or not, and everything to do with the fact that I'm a senior and I'm about to graduate and I completely understood every single word about the stupid SATs (or in my case, ACTs) and getting into all the right colleges and trying to balance a confusing class schedule. And I may have absolutely no clue what spam tastes like and thank goodness my parents are not complete-control-freak Koreans and I certainly do not have the slightest inclination for musical genius...
Yet somehow I understood every word of this book.
I just consumed it. I read the entire thing in like an hour, almost in one sitting. Something about Patti's life just echoed with me. And so now I'm sitting here...going through a whirl wind of emotions and feeling like I just made it through an earthquake.
Or maybe a tsunami.
But somehow it doesn't matter. Because for a few minutes I allowed life to be drowned out and read about a girl who is so different from me...yet with whom I share so much.
Sound sappy?
I'm just getting started.
Patti is the daughter of two Korean immigrants, and since day one of kindergarten she's been prepared to do Everything In Her Power to get into a prestigious Ivy League School. HarvardYalePrinceton to be exact. Her parents have been saving since before she was born to afford it.
Yup, no presure.
Good Enough follows this young woman who loves playing the violin through her senior year: full of AP classes, college applications, music, a cute boy.
And the pressure of home and "Korean church" as she struggles to learn where to go and what to do and really, what makes her happy.
When I first began, I assumed the book would focus on Patti's "romance" with "Cute Trumpet Guy". I assumed it would be a dorky, cute "nerd-turned-Cinderella" story.
Boy, was I wrong . And I'm so glad I was. Because this is a story that doesn't need any stupid romance to make it. It is deeper then that. And maybe right now I'm simply going insane due to pressure and picking a college and if I have to write another essay I'm going to shoot someone and really, I could be the world's worst judge of books right now.
But heck, I don't care.
Because this book just...clicked. Like when Patti discovers "rock music" and how she experienced a new kind of anger, that is how I feel. And I don't think it is a very good feeling, but at least I'm feeling something. Even if that is anger and frustration.
My favorite element of this book was Patti's youth group. Not at first, at first they were a bunch of jerks. But when she confesses that she is going to the concert and they all step up to help her....It was so adorable. And you know what? You can't fool me for a moment. They aren't "Christian kids". But it was okay. Because I felt their interaction was...true. And I understood the stress they were under.
My absolute favorite thing about this book though...came at the end. (view spoiler)
I just clicked with this book. It was kind of mindless compared to what I normally read...but it was so worth it. I would especially reccomend it to high school seniors. It is okay to snap in ways like this. It might be a bit "simple" but good heavens, who doesn't need a break every now and then? Don't be perfect. Pick up the bloody book and allow yourself to hurdle through a whirlwind of emotion.
Sometimes, you just need to.
I'm sure there are several things wrong with the book...but right now I don't care to think about them. I enjoyed it to much.
For a moment or two I'm going to relax in that, and maybe some day I'll be able to "think straight" about the pressure put on seniors.
But right now I'm happy.
And whirling.
But that is a start.
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