Stand up, Yumi Chung! by Jessica Kim

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Yumi Chung faces the classic teen dilemma: honor your parents or follow your dream?

Get up, Yumi Chung! By Jessica Kim. Penguin Random House, 2020, 306 pages

Reading level: Intermediate, 10-12 years

Recommended for: 10-14 years

Take my parents – please! Yumi Chung's parents are typically Korean high-flyers who relentlessly show off their older sister's medical school grades. Mama has also signed up Yumi for the SSAT so she can get another year scholarship at the Winston Preparatory Academy, and the rents can also boast boasting rights for her second-borns. The shy, clumsy Yumi doesn't suit WPA, where she is called Yu-Meat after noticing a touch of the family's Korean grill restaurant. She feels most comfortable on an imaginary stage when she's doing standup comedy, like her idol Jasmine Jasper, who developed the world's best comedy tutorials for kids. However, the parents' ambitions were always ahead of Yumi's. Mama has already registered for Hagwon (learning sessions) to prepare for the SSAT.

Then an amazing thing: a building nearby was converted into a comedy club, and no less a personality than Jasmine Jasper will run a summer camp for children! It's a shame that Yumi can't go. . . but maybe she can. As a result of the hike during the opening session – just to catch a glimpse of her YouTube hero – Yumi is thought to be another camper who has enrolled in the class but has not shown up. The other girl never shows up, so Yumi somehow pretends to be her for a whole week.

This cannot and will not last. Your deception is exposed in the most embarrassing way. But Yumi will get a chance to recover in her parents' eyes if the action leads directly to a feel-good conclusion from LaLa Land (which fits the LA environment). It's fun, and while the end is somewhat predictable, Yumi manages to honor her parents as she chases her dream. Well done!

Overall rating: 4 (of 5)

  • Weltanschauung / moral value: 3.75
  • Artistic / literary value: 4

Also with Redeemed Reader:

  • Prairie Lotus Track the challenges facing young Korean / American teenagers at the American border.
  • in the Cake in heavenA Chinese immigrant to Australia also struggles with parental ambitions, although most of them are in his own imagination.
  • Aven Green, protagonist of Insignificant events in the life of a cactuscould also be a standup comedian; See our star rating.

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