Jennifer Wardrip's Reviews > Kimchi & Calamari

Kimchi & Calamari by Rose Kent
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Jun 21, 2008

really liked it
bookshelves: trt-posted-reviews, read-by-other-reviewers

Reviewed by Randstostipher "tallnlankyrn" Nguyen for TeensReadToo.com

Believing that his fourteenth birthday will be the best one yet, Joseph Calderaro will be amazed at how quickly it turns sour.

It all happens during second period. After turning in his project on flag burning, Joseph thinks the assignment will be over, especially since it is May and June is just around the corner. But before the last ten minutes of class is up, his teacher assigns a 1,500-word essay about ancestors. Sure, it may seem like an easy one to write. Not for Joseph, though.

Joseph may have an Italian last name; he is anything but. His parents adopted him when they went over to Korea, and Joseph only knows the Italian side of him, which you could say isn't the true side of him. Adopted at such a young age, Joseph has no idea who his ancestors are or who his birth mother is.

Joseph doesn't mind eating calamari and cannoli frosting on a chocolate cake. He just gets a little uncomfortable when his father wants him to show off their Italian heritage, since is just isn't his.

His journey on writing his essay isn't an easy start, especially since the only help his father can give him is his parent's stories, and Joseph has heard them all.

With ancestors to discover, a girl to win over, a new student who will take him on a journey to discover his heritage, and parents who aren't much help but still love him, Joseph is in for the ride of his life. One that will help him see that being both Korean and Italian isn't bad at all.

Wonderfully written, KIMCHI & CALAMARI will take readers on an adventure that they will never forget. The novel shows how having two heritages is absolutely wonderful and that what matters the most is what we learn from it, how we enrich our lives with it. KIMCHI & CALAMARI is one novel that I will never forget.
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