Kay's Lucky Coin Variety

Kay s Lucky Coin Variety A bittersweet coming of age debut novel set in the Korean community in Toronto in the s This haunting coming of age story told through the eyes of a rebellious young girl vividly captures the st

  • Title: Kay's Lucky Coin Variety
  • Author: Ann Y.K. Choi
  • ISBN: 9781476748054
  • Page: 423
  • Format: Hardcover
  • A bittersweet coming of age debut novel set in the Korean community in Toronto in the 1980s.This haunting coming of age story, told through the eyes of a rebellious young girl, vividly captures the struggles of families caught between two cultures in the 1980s Family secrets, a lost sister, forbidden loves, domestic assaults Mary discovers as she grows up that life is mucA bittersweet coming of age debut novel set in the Korean community in Toronto in the 1980s.This haunting coming of age story, told through the eyes of a rebellious young girl, vividly captures the struggles of families caught between two cultures in the 1980s Family secrets, a lost sister, forbidden loves, domestic assaults Mary discovers as she grows up that life is much complicated than she had ever imagined Her secret passion for her English teacher is filled with problems and with the arrival of a promising Korean suitor, Joon Ho, events escalate in ways that she could never have imagined, catching the entire family in a web of deceit and violence.A unique and imaginative debut novel, Kay s Lucky Coin Variety evocatively portrays the life of a young Korean Canadian girl who will not give up on her dreams or her family.

    One thought on “Kay's Lucky Coin Variety”

    1. I recommend that you put Ann Y. K. Choi's debut novel, "Kay's Lucky Coin Variety" on your To-Read list immediately. It's truly that good. I am so fortunate to have won this book as a Giveaway, from Simon& Schuster Canada. The writing sparkles with the dreams of this Korean family, who the author describes so clearly that you can see them working in their store, smell spicy dumplings, brace with them to be polite at all costs and be hopeful that success will be in their future. Canada and th [...]

    2. It’s a remarkably grim YA story that belies any of the luck invoked in the title. Mary does not have an easy go of it and at first her story clashes with the dreamy love triangle she finds herself enmeshed in that is reminiscent of Patricia Park’s Re Jane. How could I not appreciate the story of a 2nd generation Korean story set just up the road from where I grew up. So much of it was familiar even down to the disappearance of an aunt. (in my case an uncle disappeared and was given up for de [...]

    3. Kay's Lucky Coin Variety is a heartfelt story. A solid look at what it's like to be in a new place but still have to conform to the cultural ways of another. This was a book I breezed through. I found myself wanting to listen to all that the main character had to say.One of the biggest reason I wanted to pick up Kay's Lucky Coin Variety was because like Mary, I too came to Canada at an early age. I was curious to see how my personal experiences would compare with hers. As I expected, there were [...]

    4. A Korean immigrant coming of age story set behind the counter of a Toronto convenience store. Yet another casualty of Simon & Schuster's unfortunate cover decisions, there's far more to this book than meets the eye. Choi's writing is a continual revelation for it's quiet, subtle brilliance. Unlike the sugar filled junk food sold at Mary/Yu-Rhee's convenience store, the craftsmanship shown here in this debut novel is quality fare.

    5. The original review is posted on Genuine Jenn. This is a coming-of-age story of a South Korea girl living with her family in Toronto, Ontario Canada, set in the 1980's. Her parents moved the family to Canada to make a better for their two children, working hard day and night in a family run convenient store. Mary who is the main character is having a hard time fitting into school and finding her place in the new world. She has a multi-cultural group of friends who all seem to be in the same situ [...]

    6. Kay's Lucky Coin Variety was an excellent book about a Korean-Canadian girl, and all the trials and tribulations she must go through as she becomes a young woman, and finds her place. The book is made so much better through the use of first person, as Mary - or Yu-Rhee, her Korean name - discovers her dreams, and herself. She is a wonderful narrator, her internal prose is beautiful, the way she sees the world wonderful. The book is not as happy as it seems, with heartbreak and tragedy, but is so [...]

    7. I really wanted to like this book. It starts out strong but I found the plot was built around too many unbelievable obstacles and struggles. It felt like the author was trying to address multiple problems kids of immigrants face instead of focusing on one or two

    8. I am so honoured to have met Ann YK Choi, and I'm glad I met her before I read this book. When she talked about her experiences of being the daughter of immigrants, much of her Toronto life paralleled mine, even more so than most of the other tales of immigrant daughters I have discussed with acquaintances over the years.But let me get to the book. The language of the prose dances across the pages like ballet. The beauty of such simple words describing heartbreaking situations for Mary (Yu-Rhee) [...]

    9. 5.0 out of 5 stars A very satisfying book!, July 10, 2017Verified Purchase This review is from: Kay's Lucky Coin Variety Ann Y. K. Choi really knows how to tell a story. I loved reading this book & learning about immigrant life in Toronto in the 1980s.I also enjoyed learning about Koreans through the eyes of Mary (her American name). Her trip to Korea opened her eyes & helped her understand her mother whereas previously she was angry that her life wasn't her own.Mary keeps trying to be h [...]

    10. I own a copy of this book because my dog shredded some of the pages and I had to buy it from the library. But I would have bought the book anyway because this is an outstanding debut by Ann Y.K. Choi. Kay’s Lucky Coin Variety is an earnest coming-of-age story about growing up Asian in Canada when your dreams don’t reflect the cultural values or aspirations of your family. I didn’t have the exact same pressure from my Asian family as the main character, Mary, but had similar feelings and ho [...]

    11. Upon reflection, after reading this book I realized that one of the reasons that I enjoyed this book so much was due to the author's talent for reaching inside her readers hearts and minds and being able to relate to them. I also loved that this story was set in Toronto, Ontario, Canada. I truly enjoy reading books that contain "real" settings, especially settings that I can easily visualize in my head. Being born and raised in a small town north of Toronto, I have often visited many of the loca [...]

    12. Tell Me More: It’s rarely easy, writing about immigrant stories. There’s a distance that one needs to have more often than not, to reflect upon the story you’re reading, and not draw the obvious parallels to your own. In Kay’s Lucky Coin Variety, we’re introduced to a Korean immigrant family in Canada trying to survive in the late 1980s, and we see them through their daughter’s eyes. It was both jarring and comforting to meet Mary, as the similarities between our lives took shape.I [...]

    13. A good read. It was interesting to get Choi's take on growing up as a child of immigrants, feeling torn between two cultures and not seeing herself reflected in the world around her. The expectations and pressure that Mary felt her mother was putting on her in contrast to her own hopes and dreams, and the way the Korean culture prevents her from communicating with her parents was very compelling.Although the plot took some interesting turns, a lot of the teenage angst, dealing with bad relations [...]

    14. I loved this book. It was Good with a capital G in a way that you don't experience often - even with books I end up enjoying, it takes effort to read them, and Kay's Lucky Coin Variety took no effort to read at all. Loved what it brought up about Canadian identity, representation of minorities in fields like literature, and identity in itself. I had my ideas about what Joon-Ho would become to Mary based on overused tropes I have become accustomed to in reading YA, but my assumptions were complet [...]

    15. A contemporary voice in the Canadian literature scene. This is definitely a book that is imbued with intersectionality. The main character is "Mary" who is the daughter of a couple that owns a variety store in Moss Park. She has a crush on her English teacher, enjoys the friendship of a diverse group of girls at school, and is expected to help out at the store.The novel definitely resonates with anyone who grew up in an Asian household. There seems to be a particular immigrant holding pattern th [...]

    16. Kay's Lucky Coin Variety is a immigrant coming of age story set in Toronto. The reader probably correctly assumes that the story is somewhat autobiographical in that the author is also Korean Canadian and came to Canada during the 1970s which is the same time that the book's protagonist, Mary, arrives. My main concerns about this book are the marketing. It is obviously a Young Adult title but not catalogued or processed as such. Mary is an adolescent through most of the book and dealing with ado [...]

    17. In Kay's Lucky Coin Variety, we meet Mary (Yu-Rhee) and her family who immigrated to Toronto from Korea in the 1970s when Mary was six. They own a convenience store in a rough part of town. Mary's life is a study in contrasts. None of her friends are Asian, she lives an all Canadian life in high school and then returns home to work in the store where the aromas of Korean cooking waft through the aisles. Her parents have traditional goals for her, including education and marriage. Mary chafes at [...]

    18. Emotional, insightful and extraordinarily written! I rarely read anything like this; I was not expecting the endless plot twist that unravelled during the last hundred pages! Truly, it had me wanting to read more and more. This was a happy surprise! As for the story plotline, the protagonist, an Asian-Canadian had things that I could relate to myself. I loved how it was set in Toronto! (My hometown!!) It was an insightful read; I could easily picture the life of immigrants as they start off a ne [...]

    19. A touching novel about an immigrant girl caught between two cultures. On the one hand, she has the Canadian and western way of placing above all the individual's freedom and liberty; and on the other hand, the Asian way of placing the family's reputation and expectations first. A coming of age story that illustrates the importance of family and friendship in building an individuals character. Ann Y. K. Choi elegantly demonstrates in her novel what many immigrant children go through in the new wo [...]

    20. As an immigrant, I personally could relate to this book and really enjoyed the story. I know how is feels to be in the middle of two cultures and you just want to emerge yourself in the new and be part of the crowd. I thought the author did a great job to describe the tension between the parents and children and their struggle in a new country. There were some plot twists that were well done added to the story for a little excitement. I am really looking forward to discussing this with the group [...]

    21. I won this book through and am delighted that I did or I might not have discovered this treasure. Set in Toronto in the 1980s, teen aged Mary works in her parents' variety store. Belonging to two worlds, Korean and Canadian, she grows, loves, loses and learns. Everything about the time and setting was so familiar to me I felt like had visited her store and had been at Convocation Hall for her graduation. Well done, Ms Choi. I look forward to your next book.

    22. A gripping story of a Korean family in Canada. The story was raw and painted a realistic picture of the struggles that immigrants face, all the work and sacrifices. I loved the setting; Toronto and all its different areas. The story spans about 5 years, and it was nice to see the growth of Mary. The last 100 pages were especially emotional and suspenseful. I won this book via First Reads Giveaway from Simon and Schuster.

    23. This book was amazing. One of those books that's impossible to put down. The fact that the book takes place down the street from where I just moved to two days ago was a nice bit of circumstance as well.

    24. This is a debut novel by a Canadian author of Korean heritage. She offers us a glimpse into the life of an immigrant family and the relationship between generations. It was an easy read but full of messages. I am sure that we will be hearing more from this author.

    25. The first half of this book was absolutely flawless. It draws the reader into the realistic world of Mary, a teenage Korean-Canadian who feels enslaved to the work at her parents' convenience/variety store, while also struggling with feelings of love towards her English teacher, and other typical young adult feelings and thoughts, including her personal identity struggles, as the Korean culture that her parents expect her to follow clashes with the Western culture in which she is growing up. Mar [...]

    26. I bought this book because I was in Toronto and wanted some local literature. I grew up near Toronto in the late-80s to mid-90s and had immigrant parents, so of course this resonated somewhat. Although the story was riveting enough, I found the prose rather stilted and clunky, and the supporting characters mostly one dimensional. I appreciated that the author does not make the English teacher love interest a white knight, but shows how it was a fantasy on Mary's part; Choi also doesn't completel [...]

    27. I bought this book because it was apart of a book haul that BookTuber Squibbles Reads did. At first, the story was a little slow but it made up for it. I love reading about 1st generation kids because I am one myself. I loved how Kay's view of her parents changed in the end. It was an easy read but very beautiful and gave me a realistic glimpse into the lives of Korean families. Kay's character was easy to identify with and so were most of the other characters.

    28. This was an interesting coming-of-age novel about a young Korean girl in Toronto. It takes place in the late 1980s, just before the Seoul Olympics. Mary (Yu-Rhee) lives with her brother and parents above the variety store that the family owns. She had to cope with disappointments and tragedies as she was forced to straddle two cultures. I sympathized with Mary's plight but I often didn't like her much. She made some very poor decisions.

    29. I could not put this book down and regret waiting for this challenge to get me to read it. I saw an article about the author and the book, being her debut novel, and was curious. She blew me away with her insight, graceful writing and layers of complexity underneath uncomplicated sentences. I cried all throughout the last five chapters. If I could, I would give it more than 5 stars. How did this book not win a national award!?

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