Friday, July 27, 2018

Front Desk by Kelly Yang

Front Desk 
by Kelly Yang
Published May, 2018
286 Pages

Goodreads Summary
Front Desk tells the story of 10-year-old Mia Tang. Every day, Mia manages the front desk of the Calivista Motel while her parents clean the rooms. She’s proud of her job. She loves the guests and treats them like family. When one of the guests gets into trouble with the police, it shakes Mia to her core. Her parents, meanwhile, hide immigrants in the empty rooms at night. If the mean motel owner Mr. Yao finds out, they’ll be doomed!
Based on the author's life, the story follows Mia — the daughter of first generation Chinese immigrants.

My Thoughts
Oh my goodness, I loved this book so much. Yang creates characters that you care about and root for.  I love how Mia finds the power of writing and how her words can change people's lives. I truly felt for Mia, her family and all of the immigrants. Their stories were very real and it was heart-wrenching to read about the injustices they faced. The author's note reveals that many of the events were based on Yang's childhood in California. Mr. Yao, the hotel owner, is someone readers will love to hate. He is just awful and I shudder to think that he is based on a real person. Yang presents prejudice and bigotry in a way that young readers will understand. 
I read Front Desk rather quickly because I just had to find out what was going to happen to Mia, her family and the other characters. It would make a great read aloud and offers many opportunities for deep and important discussions. 
I would highly recommend it for grades 4-6. 

Check out the book trailer.

See what others have to say about this book:
Kirkus-Starred review

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