Almost American Girl

Almost American Girl

An Illustrated Memoir

Graphic Novel - 2020
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"A powerful and moving teen graphic novel memoir about immigration, belonging, and how arts can save a life--perfect for fans of American Born Chinese and Hey, Kiddo. For as long as she can remember, it's been Robin and her mom against the world. Growing up as the only child of a single mother in Seoul, Korea, wasn't always easy, but it has bonded them fiercely together. So when a vacation to visit friends in Huntsville, Alabama, unexpectedly becomes a permanent relocation--following her mother's announcement that she's getting married--Robin is devastated. Overnight, her life changes. She is dropped into a new school where she doesn't understand the language and struggles to keep up. She is completely cut off from her friends in Seoul and has no access to her beloved comics. At home, she doesn't fit in with her new stepfamily, and worst of all, she is furious with the one person she is closest to--her mother. Then one day Robin's mother enrolls her in a local comic drawing class, which opens the window to a future Robin could never have imagined"
Publisher: 2020/01/28
New York, N.Y. : Balzer + Bray/Harper Alley, imprints of HarperCollins Publishers, 2020.
Edition: First edition.
ISBN: 9780062685100
Call Number: HA
Characteristics: 227 pages : chiefly color illustrations ; 24 cm.
Subjects: Authors, American -- Virginia -- Falls Church -- Comic books, strips, etc.
Emigration and immigration -- Comic books, strips, etc.
Immigrants -- Comic books, strips, etc.
Mothers and daughters -- Comic books, strips, etc.
Single mothers -- Comic books, strips, etc.
Teenage girls -- Comic books, strips, etc.
Koreans -- United States -- Comic books, strips, etc.
Stepfamilies -- Comic books, strips, etc.
English language -- Study and teaching -- Comic books, strips, etc.
Korean American families -- Comic books, strips, etc.
Korean Americans -- Comic books, strips, etc.
Women immigrants -- Biography -- Comic books, strips, etc.
Women illustrators -- Biography -- Comic books, strips, etc.
Korea -- Comic books, strips, etc.
Alabama -- Comic books, strips, etc.
Graphic novels.
Comics (Graphic works)
Autobiographical comics.
Nonfiction comics.
Est. publishing date: 2020/01/28


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Donna_R Sep 27, 2020

I love an illustrated memoir, and Robin's is one of the best I have read.

Sep 20, 2020

A nice story of learning to fit in and finding one's "hyphenated" (Korean-American) identity.

Tigard_HollyCP Jul 08, 2020

When Robin Ha was 14 years old, her mom uprooted her from her home in Korea and moved her to Alabama. She left behind her home, her friends, even her beloved comic books for a place she had never heard of and where she could not understand the language. Her only saving grace was a comic creating class where she met her first American best friend. With the initially reluctant permission of her mom, she published this graphic memoir about her experience as a Korean immigrant in the American South. She cleverly uses speech bubbles, font color and captions to tell her story to English readers, even during the part of her life when she only spoke Korean.

JessicaGma Apr 23, 2020

Being a teenager is tough enough but imagine if you moved around the world with your mum to a new country where you didn't speak the language? Chuna/Robin did just that when her mum moved them both from South Korea to Alabama in the 1990s. Robin had to deal with the usual teenage baggage but also learn more about her mother and how Koreans saw her. It's a great memoir about growing up but also how one deals with immigration and a new country.

Tigard_LindsayD Mar 08, 2020

A heartfelt graphic novel memoir of a South Korean teen who abruptly moves to Alabama with her single mom in the 1990s. If you like stories about nerdy teens coming into their own, complex families, or cross-cultural dynamics this book is for you!

RandomLibrarian Feb 08, 2020

As a young teen, Chuna Ha and her mother move from Seoul, South Korea, to Alabama. Chuna doesn't find out that her mother is staying because she married the man they came to visit until they've already been in the US for two weeks. She doesn't really speak English and her school has no ESL program. Chuna feels homesick, bored and frustrated by not being able to understand her teachers or classmates, and endures bullying for being Asian. She misses her belongings and the friends she left behind in Korea, and hates American food and her new cousins, who exclude her.

She chooses the name Robin to try and better fit in. As she begins to make friends, her mother announces they are moving again - this time to Virginia. Along the way, from starting life over again in Viriginia and going back to visit her old home in Korea, Robin begins to understand her mother's choices better and to reconcile her life as a Korean-American.

This graphic novel is a compelling memoir of an unwilling fish-out-of-water. Highly recommend!

LPL_MaryW Oct 31, 2019

Robin Ha’s graphic memoir Almost American Girl is an intimate look at a whirlwind mother-daughter relationship. Chuna’s self-sufficient single mother unexpectedly relocates the family from Seoul to Alabama to start a new life, unbeknownst to her daughter upon their arrival. Devastated to have left in everything she loves in Korea, and not speaking a word of English, Chuna—now Robin—struggles to fit into her new American world. I felt like I was holding her heart in my hands as I watched Robin uncover identity, shame, resilience. This beautiful book is sure to inspire empathy for immigrants in a country where the opposite is so often true.


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Feb 27, 2020

yellow_turtle_456 thinks this title is suitable for between the ages of 7 and 99


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