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Monsoon Summer Book Review

Monsoon Summer Book Review - Reviewed by Kidzworld on Dec 27, 2006
( Rating: 5 Star Rating)

Jasmine Garder has a summer to remember in Mitali Perkins new novel, Monsoon Summer.

Author: Mitali Perkins

When you're a 15 year-old girl, life can be complicated and confusing, and for Jasmine (Jazz) Gardner, things are about to get even more hectic! After a year of taking Hindi lessons, practicing shot put and maintaining good grades, she has to pack up and leave the country. What she really wants to do is spend her summer running the postcard business she shares with her best friend (and secret crush), Steve. Read on to find out about Jazz's adventure!


Moving Time

When her parents decide to uproot the family from their Berkeley, California home and spend the summer in India, Jasmine is less than impressed. Her social activist mother wants to return to the orphanage that took care of her until she was adopted by an American couple. Her father, a computer programmer, and her bug-collecting, 10 year-old brother Eric are more than happy to go along for the ride.


Life in India

Upon arrival, Jazz feels out of place with her lighter coloring and bigger build and decides to attend school instead helping out at the orphanage. She becomes friends with three well-off Indian girls who are fascinated by American life and insist on taking her dancing (which she hates). Meanwhile, Eric becomes the orphanage soccer coach, their dad teaches the nuns how to use computers and her mom sets up a clinic for young women.


New Friends

When orphan Danita, also 15, begins cooking for the Gardners to earn money, Jazz is guarded. However, as they spend more time together, their friendship grows. Jazz realizes that she should spend her days at the orphanage, helping Danita develop a business plan for her collection of handmade clothing and accessories. In return, Danita teaches Jazz Kathak, an Indian dance. When Danita is offered a marriage proposal from an older man who promises to take care of her and her sisters, Jazz puts her heart into the business so that Danita won't have to marry him. Will her business be a success, or will she accept the proposal?


The Bottom Line

This is a touching story which deals with issues important to young girls such as self esteem and the quest for identity. It also deals with more general themes like culture, honesty, conquering one's fears, and selflessness. As an added bonus, there's a bit of love story that blossoms between Jazz and her BFF Steve!


Monsoon Summer Rating: 5


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  • 0 Comments

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    Monsoon-poll

    What Is a Monsoon?

    • The type of earthquake which occurs in the Indian ocean.
    • A spicy, traditional Indian dish.
    • Heavy rains brought on by strong south Asian winds.
    • The Indian word for travel.

    Random In The Forums

    rainbowpoptart
    "Unrung" wrote:Well if you ask me, it's pretty obvious: the cat and the basket are one. Fused together in some freak accident in a science lab. See, it's screaming because it has to deal with the perpetual existential question of why it was created, to which it can find no comforting answer. why why why why why why why (seeing that word so much makes it look weird. hm.)
    reply about 2 hours
    Unrung
    Unrung posted in Say Anything:
    Well if you ask me, it's pretty obvious: the cat and the basket are one. Fused together in some freak accident in a science lab. See, it's screaming because it has to deal with the perpetual existential question of why it was created, to which it can find no comforting answer.
    reply about 3 hours
    Pink_Cool_Girl
    Pink_Cool_Girl posted in General:
    Swimming, maybe playing some fun sports. But don't get overheated- Stay inside too sometimes!I quote from Diary of a Wimpy Kid:"People expect you to be frolicking around in the summer. And when you don't, they thing something I wrong with you."
    reply about 5 hours
    jordand08
    jordand08 posted in General:
    Hanging out at the beach, and exploring... Depends on where you're vacation is.
    reply about 5 hours
    LovelyPurpleUnicorn
    I'm shorter compared to almost everyone  :(
    reply about 7 hours