Love in English by Maria E. Andreu
A fresh, breakout YA novel that is layered with themes of immigration, cultural identity, and finding your voice in any language.
Sixteen-year-old Ana is a poet and a lover of language. Except that since she moved to New Jersey from Argentina, she can barely find the words to express how she feels.
At first, Ana just wants to return home. Then she meets Harrison, the very cute, very American boy in her math class, and discovers the universal language of racing hearts. But when she begins spending time with Neo, the Greek Cypriot boy from ESL, Ana wonders how figuring out what her heart wants can be even more confusing than the grammar they’re both trying to master. After all, the rules of English may be confounding, but there are no rules when it comes to love.
With playful and poetic breakouts exploring the idiosyncrasies of the English language, Love in English is witty and effervescent, while telling a beautifully observed story about what it means to become “American.”
Book Review by Kelly Lacey
I loved this book from start to finish. It reminded me of Judy Blume’s writing but with modern-day feels. When Ana moves with her Mother from Argentina to live her new life in America her whole life gets turned upside down. Her father left previous to create the roots of their new life. His English is very good and now he has expectations for Ana to fit in, stay on top of her grades and learn better English.
It is already tough for any student navigating the daily struggles of school, emotions, boys, girls and studying. Throw into the mix not being able to understand English and the weight of all of that is immense for Ana. What brings respite is the friends she makes in her ESL class and who is this boy in maths that makes paper birds?
Ana is a likeable strong female character and I am sure she will inspire many readers. Although she is meant to be 16 in the book I felt she and the other characters were a little younger. I really loved Neo, he was just as lost as Ana and the two complimented each other so much.
The awkward laugh out loud moments are what make this book extra special. I lived in the ’80s and as Neo and Ana experience some culture from then I was in fits of giggles.
The book is perfect escapism and hopes there are further books with these characters.
Te lo recomiendo mucho!
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