Angelfish

Angelfish

by Laurence Yep

Robin, a young ballet dancer who is half Chinese and half white, works in a fish store for Mr. Tsow, a brusque Chinese who accuses her of being a half-person and who harbors a bitter secret. Robin and her grandmother decide to help and end Mr. Tsow's nightmare.

  • Language: English
  • Category: Realistic Fiction
  • Rating: 3.73
  • Pages: 216
  • Publish Date: June 25th 2001 by Putnam Juvenile
  • Isbn10: 0399230416
  • Isbn13: 9780399230417

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Angelfish is Juvenile Fiction and has its audience in mind. Near the end of the jacket copy, it reads, To their horror, they discover that he was a victim of the Chinese Cultural Revolution. When the Chinese Cultural Revolution is mentioned for the first time, Robin doesnt truly understand the implications, and I am guessing most readers wont either. It is to theirs and the Readers horror when you discover Mr. Tsows victimization. Yep keeps a lighthearted and determinedly optimistic tone to off-set the dark intrigue surrounding Mr. Tsow; buoying the story in the kindness of the human heart and the hope of new beginnings, and families who fight to save their own. I would recommend Angelfish to any Juvenile Fiction audience member, especially those interested in a not wholly-white protagonist, a diverse cast, and in cultural information and revelation.

Robin is a tween/teen (I dont think Yep states how old she is), who is a half-Chinese, half-White ballerina. Hes not just grumpy, but insulting and condescending to Robin, calling her names like bun head and saying that she is only a half person because she is not full Chinese nor full White. She then asks around and with her grandmothers help, discovers that Mr. Cao (his name was transliterated incorrectly from the Chinese character) was a famous ballet dancer in China during the Cultural Revolution. Robin asks for his help in putting on her troupes stage production of Beauty and the Beast. Even though he made fun of Robin because she was half-Chinese and half-White, he had determined ways to breed his angelfish so that theyd be the most beautiful hybrids that they could possibly be. v. character names/description: Robin, teenaged girl, half-Chinese, half-White, who is a ballerina and earned the spot of Beauty in her troupes production of Beauty and the Beast; Mr. Tsow, owner of the Dragon King, was a famous ballet dancer; Robins grandmother, knows her Chinatown and Richmond District connections to help Robin find out Mr. Tsows past vi.

Even though Mr. Cao was very bitter and ignorant to Robin, such as calling her a half person, he did show love and consideration of his growing angelfish. I would recommend this book to anyone, especially people who enjoy solving mysteries and reading about realistic fiction.

I enjoyed reading this book because Robin is a ballet dancer and dance is something I like to do. The main idea of this story is that a young girl named Robin, accidently threw her book bag at a store window.

As with so many of Yep's novel, the central theme is the coming together of different generations. Despite the rough start where I wasn't sure I'd like or understand either Robin or Mr. Tsow, I ended up loving the book.

This book was good because it incorporates the international aspects young adult lit rarely has.

Yep's father, Thomas, was born in China and came to America at the age of ten where he lived, not in Chinatown, but with an Irish friend in a white neighborhood. During high school he faced the white American culture for the first time.