Wednesday, July 09, 2008

Good Enough, by Paula Yoo

Patti is a stereotypical overachieving Asian high schooler with overanxious parents who are convinced that without constant effort there is no way that she's ever going to get into HARVARDYALEPRINCETON. But despite her success, Patti feels that something is lacking and that she is simply not good enough.

While starting with a stereotype, Yoo quickly departs from stock notions, adding a level of detail and depth that make Patti a really likeable character. There is some underdeveloped themes about racism, the story itself is predictable, and it all wraps up a bit too neatly for belief, but even these shortcomings have their own satisfactions. More than your usual guilty pleasure, the story has enough substance and life observations to make it shine. Recommended.

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