Merging of Multiple Tales

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alwyzsleepn Avatar


As a fan of the storytelling in AMERICAN BORN CHINESE and the art in the KITTY-CORN series, I needed LUNAR NEW YEAR LOVE STORY as soon as it was announced.

I love how this story blends both Western and Eastern cultures. We meet Valentina, who has always loved Valentine's Day, but one year her idealism for the holiday is shattered. During an outing with her paternal grandmother, she attends a têt celebration, and sees a lion dancing troupe, and signs up

It's a story about how not all things as they appear in photos - that what someone on the outside might see as happiness is really a trick of how the camera captured the moment.

It's a story that is about generations, as we get snippets of her grandparents, and her parents.

It's a story about heartbreak and healing. The lows, the highs, and all the feelings in between.

It's a story that blends multiple Eastern cultures - Valentina is Vietnamese, but we learn a bit about both Chinese and Korean Lion dancing.

And along those lines, it showcases that not everyone from similar background has the same story - as all the characters have different experiences that shape them.

The art reflects a lot of the story, and enhances it. For example, on the cover, what you may see at first glance as a night sky, when looking at the details, you'll see two lions.

Bonus for me: this book takes place primarily in Oakland, California.

Content Notes: death of parent, alcoholism, parental abandonment