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WHAT I MEANT... by Marie Lamba


by Marie Lamba

Age Range: 14 & up

Pub Date: July 24th, 2007
ISBN: 978-0-375-84091-3
Publisher: Random House

Since Sang’s bossy aunt from India moved in with Sang’s family, it seems like she can’t do anything right; this is new for the 15-year-old girl, who’s used to perfect grades and praise for exemplary behavior. Fed up with her tyrannical aunt, whom Sang is ironically required to call Chachi, an Indian term of endearment, she decides to fight back. However, it’s immediately clear that Sang has underestimated Chachi and now, instead of ousting her aunt, Sang must defend her own reputation. It’s been jeopardized by a string of misunderstandings strategically exacerbated by Chachi that stand to ruin her relationships with her best friend, her secret crush and her family. Although readers become intimate with Sang through her thoughts and the creative bedtime fairy tales she weaves for her little sister, the majority of Sang’s friends and family members lack development. However, adding detail and depth to the text is the influence of Sang’s father’s Indian heritage, which naturally integrates not only elements like traditional Indian foods, but also cultural beliefs relating to family and dating. Realistic and well-paced. (Fiction. YA)