|Mambo in Chinatown|
My name is Charlie Wong and I'm the daughter of a dancer and a noodle-maker. My mother was once a star ballerina at the famed Beijing Dance Academy before she ran off to marry my father, the handsomest noodle-maker in Beijing - or at least that's what she always called him before she died. Hand in hand, they escaped to America to start their family.Page 56:
The dress was quite modest but revealed my neck and collarbones. I understood the moment Pa paused that I'd done wrong.My comments:
"Don't you like it?" I asked, already knowing the answer.
"You look like a dancing girl," he said.
"Ma was one," Lisa said.
"Your mother was a dancer," he said.
Charlie Wong is American-born Chinese (ABC) and her parents were born in China (FOB - fresh off the boat. Don't you just love these acronyms!).
Charlie breaks out of a Manhattan Chinatown mold and enters the world of dance, a world her mother, a former Beijing Opera dancer, had introduced her to. Charlie meets Caucasians, American Blacks, Hispanics, and international dancers and changes her limited future to one that opens for new opportunities. She also helps her troubled younger sister Lisa to find optimism and her place in American society.
Informative look at some new Americans and some of the difficulties between the modern and the traditional cultures many young American immigrants face. Excellent characterizations and storytelling, Mambo in Chinatown pulls you into the world of a young woman inspired by her mother to make a better life for herself in America.
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