Each short story in this compilation turns the idea of the American Dream on its head. The narrators of every story are young Chinese-American girls who grow up in between both China and America, as their parents learn to navigate survival in the United States. The girls share growing up in cramped rooms with ten people, the lengths their families go through to stay together, and the pivotal friendships they make along the way. Prepare to wince and laugh at the unfiltered perspectives of the young voices that Zhang creates.
"I wondered how magic was distributed in the world and when and if my family would receive our fair share because I was no longer worried about how we were going to travel the seventy-something miles to get home without spending the last of our thirteen dollars. I just needed my mother to turn around and look at my father and laugh at how skinny his legs looked, sticking out from under his protruding stomach that we once joked was a home for the world's roundest watermelon- that was the kind of magic I was after" (Zhang 38).
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