I love you so mochi

Sarah Kuhn

Book - 2019

Kimi Nakamura loves nothing more than transforming the outfits of her friends into expressions of their "Ultimate Selves" but her mother thinks it is a waste of time. After a huge fight, Kimi makes the decision to accept her grandparents' invitation to Kyoto where she is surrounded by her heritage, which is simultaneously foreign and familiar, and the environment helps her understand her mother better than ever before.

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Subjects
Genres
Bildungsromans
Published
New York : Scholastic Press 2019.
Edition
First edition
Language
English
Physical Description
308 pages : map ; 22 cm
ISBN
9781338302882
1338302884
Main Author
Sarah Kuhn (author)
Review by Booklist Reviews

High-school senior Kimi Nakamura is a whiz at whipping up "Kimi Originals" from thrift store clothing and fabric remnants, but her mother, a Japanese artist, wants Kimi to be a painter. When she drops her Advanced Fine Arts class, it ignites a terrible fight with her parents. Then an invitation arrives for Kimi to visit her grandparents in Kyoto, which she decides is the perfect opportunity to clear her head. Meeting her obaasan and ojiisan for the first time is awkward, but culture shock truly sets in when a cute boy named Akira offers to be her guide. Akira works at his uncle's mochi shop but dreams of being a doctor, and he's determined to help Kimi realize her true passion, too. Kimi is an adorable, lovable narrator who battles obstacles bravely—from learning the subtleties of Japanese culture to falling in love to fully embracing her own art. The food and cherry blossoms, ornate temples, and vivid colors make Kimi's first trip to Japan a joyous journey of self-realization, empowerment, and artistic fulfillment. Grades 8-12. Copyright 2019 Booklist Reviews.

Review by PW Annex Reviews

Culver City High School senior Kimi Nakamura has her life mapped out. Next year, she will attend Liu Fine Arts Academy, her next step to becoming a "Great Asian American Artist," as her artist mother has always intended. But after feeling blocked from painting, Kimi secretly drops out of Advanced Fine Art and focuses her energy, instead, on designing and creating clothes. After her mom learns about the dropped class, a well-timed invitation to visit her estranged maternal grandparents in Kyoto over spring break is the reprieve Kimi needs to recalibrate her relationship with her mom and explore her true artistic passions. And sparks fly when "Kimi from America" meets "Akira. From Japan," who is dressed as an anthropomorphized mochi to sell his uncle's handcrafted treats. This novel offers a unique perspective of Japanese culture from the experiences of a fifth-generation Japanese-American protagonist. Kuhn (the Heroine Complex series), herself of Japanese ancestry, peppers the novel with Japanese phrases, foods, and cultural specifics. Readers of all backgrounds will connect with the universal themes and insights into teenage first love in this charming rom-com. Ages 12–up. Agent: Diana Fox, Fox Literary Agency. (June) Copyright 2019 Publishers Weekly Annex.

Review by School Library Journal Reviews

Gr 8 Up—All is not well in the world of Kimiko Nakamura. It's the second half of her senior year, and Kimi's already been accepted to a prestigious art school where she will pursue her (and her mom's) dream of becoming an artist—definitely not the ideal time to realize that painting is no longer her passion. Kimi would rather design and create exciting fashions for herself and her friends than worry about her future. The revelation drives a wedge between her and her mother, so Kimi accepts an unexpected invitation from her estranged grandparents to visit them in Japan for spring break. There she meets Akira, a handsome mascot for his uncle's mochi business. He pledges to help Kimi discover her true passion as they explore Kyoto and their growing feelings for each other. The setting, replete with blooming cherry trees, delicious food, and a culture that is at once familiar and foreign to Kimi, is a perfect backdrop for her musings on identity, family, and purpose. Kimi's developing relationship with her grandparents, through which she begins to understand both herself and her mother in a new light, is particularly touching and well told in this YA debut. VERDICT Deliver to readers who crave frothy, clean romance as sweet as mochi with a heaping side of satisfying self-discovery.—Darla Salva Cruz, Suffolk Cooperative Library System, Bellport, NY Copyright 2019 School Library Journal.

Review by Publisher Summary 1

Kimi's mother objects to her fashion ambitions, so when her grandparents invite her to Kyoto for spring break, she takes the opportunity to escape her mother's disapproval.

Review by Publisher Summary 2

Kimi Nakamura loves fashion and designing clothes, jewelry, and accessories for her friends, but her mother, a professional graphic designer with a long list of clients, wants her to be a serious artist, and is furious when she discovers Kimi has droppedher fine arts class; so Kimi is relieved to be able to visit her normally estranged grandparents in Kyoto during spring break--but what begins as an escape becomes a way to learn about her mother and her Japanese heritage, and to figure out how to move forward with her own life.

Review by Publisher Summary 3

Eagerly visiting her estranged grandparents in Japan to distance herself from the mother who disapproves of her fashion ambitions, a talented young designer immerses herself in Kyoto's markets and cherry blossom festival and bonds with a cute med student while uncovering illuminating family secrets.

Review by Publisher Summary 4

Perfect for fans of Jenny Han and Kasie West, I Love You So Mochi is a delightfully sweet and irrepressibly funny novel from accomplished author Sarah Kuhn.

Review by Publisher Summary 5

Perfect for fans of Jenny Han and Kasie West, I Love You So Mochi is a delightfully sweet and irrepressibly funny novel from accomplished author Sarah Kuhn."As sweet and satisfying as actual mochi... a tender love story wrapped up in food, fashion, and family. I gobbled it up." -- Maurene Goo, author of The Way You Make Me FeelKimi Nakamura loves a good fashion statement.She's obsessed with transforming everyday ephemera into Kimi Originals: bold outfits that make her and her friends feel like the Ultimate versions of themselves. But her mother disapproves, and when they get into an explosive fight, Kimi's entire future seems on the verge of falling apart. So when a surprise letter comes in the mail from Kimi's estranged grandparents, inviting her to Kyoto for spring break, she seizes the opportunity to get away from the disaster of her life.When she arrives in Japan, she's met with a culture both familiar and completely foreign to her. She loses herself in the city's outdoor markets, art installations, and cherry blossom festival -- and meets Akira, a cute aspiring med student who moonlights as a costumed mochi mascot. And what begins as a trip to escape her problems quickly becomes a way for Kimi to learn more about the mother she left behind, and to figure out where her own heart lies.In I Love You So Mochi, author Sarah Kuhn has penned a delightfully sweet and irrepressibly funny novel that will make you squee at the cute, cringe at the awkward, and show that sometimes you have to lose yourself in something you love to find your Ultimate self.