A Taste for Love

Listening Library. 2021. 336p. $63. ISBN 9780593341520.
Gr 7 Up–Her model—yep, as in runway—older sister Jeannie couldn’t be more perfect, leaving Liza all too familiar with their Taiwanese immigrant mother’s disappointment and frustration. Despite Mom’s “no dating while you’re in school” rule, she ironically can’t get over Liza’s lack of appropriate boyfriend. For Mom—never mind Liza—he has to be Asian, tall, and smart, with stable career prospects…and did Mom mention Asian? Though Liza and her mother are mismatched over Liza’s love life, the one thing they have in common—absolutely superb baking skills—might prove to be the secret ingredient to yield sweet victories for the whole family. Yen’s debut sets Pride and Prejudice over a Houston summer of tasty surprises, read by first-time solo narrator Josephine Huang. The actor/filmmaker/foodie proffers a youthful, energetic performance, but her inexperience is unmistakable as she stumbles through mispronunciations of names—best-selling author Jenny Han, for example—and simple words easily researched for accuracy, including pho and sakura.
VERDICT Despite the occasional inaccurate glitches, Yen’s toothsome concoction is an irresistible treat for fans of Sandhya Menon, Maureen Goo, and Elizabeth Acevedo.

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