Pdf/E–pub Pie in the Sky by Remy Lai

Pie in the Sky

SUMMARY Ú PDF, DOC, TXT or eBook ¹ Remy Lai

Arrows indicate each color with wonderfully precise yet descriptive language Cat Tongue Pink Fire Orange Snowy Cream It s this mocking combination of the beauty of language Cat Tongue Pink Fire Orange Snowy Cream It s this mocking combination of the beauty of internal layers contrasted with the smashy smashyness of it all on the ground And that s just two pages Somehow Lai was able to put that level of commitment and detail into the whole dang book All 380 pages of it Do you see now why I was so loored pardon the punThe inevitable uestion I ask myself in a review of this type is whether or not there was anything in this book I would have liked to be a bit different in this book I would have liked to be a bit different guess For example I understand why Lai The Magic Cake Shop felt it necessary to never say what country Jingwen and Yanghao are leaving If youail to mention their point of origin then their story becomes a little universal right I dunno though There s a lot to be gained in specificity We know that in interviews Ms Lai has said that she borrowed elements of this tale rom her own childhood like the act that she learned English when she was nine We also know that she was born in Indonesia grew up in Singapore and now lives in Brisbane Australia As an adult I wanted the details of where exactly Jingwen and Yanghao were rom but the I thought about it the I took stock Think of it rom a kid s point of view To what degree are they going to care about where the brothers are coming Beauty is a Verb: The New Poetry of Disability from Does it really matter in the course of the story I remain undecided with this decision I think I ll just hand the book to kids and see if they ever mention it Not every sad bookor kids has to be leavened with humor and wit Not every book needs to be The Curious World of Wine: Facts, Legends, and Lore About the Drink We Love So Much filled with an array of luscious yummy cakes And not every illustrated novel has to be this good But it helps Consider this the easiest book to booktalk in the world You play up the cakes show the kids the cartoons and voila They re instantly reading a story about the complications that come withamily love and communication letting go not just of the people we love but the guilt we ve tied to their memories and how much bravery it takes to admit when we re wrong That s a whole lot of serious stuff American Hunger: The Pulitzer Prize-Winning Washington Post Series for such a blithelyunny work of The Mother Zone fiction If this is what Remy Lai s got going on straight out of the gate I can t wait to see what she comes up with next Even if it doesn t involve cakeFor ages 9 12 I absolutely adored this book At my age there aren t many middle grade books that satisfy me But this one did It was such a sweet heartfelt bookI know how hard it is toeel like an alien Mostly cause I actually look like one And the story was so creative and well writtenAnd guys IT HAS PICTURES And they are evened out perfectlyNot too much so that it The Void feels like a graphic novelBut not too little that it is like where be all the pictures This story ofriendship getting over doubt and cakes was such a The Poke Cookbook: The Freshest Way to Eat Fish favoriteor me I can t wait or y all to read it 11 year old Jingwen moves to Australia with his mother and annoying younger brother and it s like he s landed on Mars His English isn t great school sucks his little brother picks up English uickly the other students think he s slow and he s wracked with the guilt of memories of his ather But Jingwen has a solution If he can just bake all of the cakes his The Somme: Heroism and Horror in the First World War father plannedor his cake shop life will get betterThere s just one problem Jingwen s mother won t allow him to bakeI reuested this ARC Sicilian Lives from NetGalley because I thought that it was all graphic novel but it s of a regular novel with some comic illustrations thrown in here or there The comics compliment the story and add context and illustration plus the way Yanghao is drawn is hilarious but I kinda wished it had been done as a graphic novel inull insteadA lot happens in this book but overall it s about Tattoo a Banana: And Other Ways to Turn Anything and Everything Into Art fitting in and learning toace your Alice Oliver fears and your grief makingriends moving into a new place and a little bit about coping mechanisms and communication And of course a lot about mixed messages particularly when you don t speak the language but don t want to seem dumb or slowJust make sure you ve eaten something before reading this because if you have zero willpower like you ll The Protestant Temperament find yourself zipping into the grocery store at 8 am on a Sunday to pick up delicious cheesecake And get staresrom all the grocers because who buys cheesecake at 8 am on SundayI received this ARC That's So '90s Pop!: A Fill-In Activity Book from NetGalleyor an honest review I loved this one so so much Wen and Yanghao bake elaborate cakes they'll have to cook up elaborate excuses to keep the cake making a secret rom MamaTold in prose and graphic novel elements this middle grade novel is about a boy's immigration experience his annoying little brother and their cake baking hijink. Art Recently I ve become and interested in middle grade novels where Bullying T The isn the jockmean girlcliue set of tropes that kids by now have internalized Put simply that stuff is boring Saturday morning cartoon boring If you re going to have a character eel bullied in some way let it come The Best American Crime Writing from nice kids Because being hurt by a mean kid isn tun but you can write that person off as mean Getting hurt by a nice kid A million times worse In Pie in the Sky no one ever walks up to Jingwen to say something mean him But than once he overhears a classmate and is able understand just enough to know or think that they re talking about him Even then what they re saying is that he s slow particularly when it comes to speaking English Not the worst insult but it just kills him You get this amazing moment when Jingwen who s been picturing himself as an alien ever since he arrived in Australia looking in the bathroom mirror to The Internet of Us: Knowing More and Understanding Less in the Age of Big Data find that because of their words he sees himself as monstrous and grotesue rather than less a trope that sort of peters out at the end but oh well Later when he runs into those kids one will just run away rather than deal with what he said There s a lot of truth to that and it sure as heck beats watching someone get stuffed in a locker As I read Pie in the Sky I noticed that Lai uses a specific techniue in the book thateels amiliar The I read the I elt that she was referencing Shaun Tan s The Arrival on some level It makes sense Both Lai and Tan live in Australia Both have Tempting Eden firsthand knowledge of the immigrant experience whether it s their own or their parents So when Lai depicts the English language as an alien series of indecipherable pictograms I was reminded of how Tan did something similar in his books by cutting up English letters and rearranging them into unfamiliar but beautiful patterns Another book Here I Am by Patti Kimeatures art by Sonia S nchez that is wordless by also making the English words impossible to read on the page And like Pie in the Sky it s about a child coming to a new country and new classroom Talking to Dragons (Enchanted Forest Chronicles, farrom everything that s ever Talking to Dragons feltamiliar Three books on a similar theme one a graphic novel one a picture book and one an illustrated novel Together they eual necessary purchases Three Times the Love for your home or public librarySo let s talk a bit about Lai s comics First off can I tell you howreakin thrilled I was when I The Drowning Man found out Lai was a woman I love two things in this world possibly butor the purposes of this sentence we re sticking with two Funny The Bride of Willow Creek female writers andemale comic artists To get both in one book blows my GREAT INVESTMENT, THE furry little mind I mean I was pretty much in Lai s pocketrom the irst page onward Wanna know how she hooked me It was Yanghao I think writers of middle grade everywhere could learn a lot rom the creation of Yanghao Loads and loads of novels are written every year on deeply sad depressing topics I mean this book is dealing with grief and guilt and culture shock and immigration and It could bog down even the most valiant reader if not The Lively Art of Writing for Yanghao that little jolt of joy Is he annoying Let s just say I have never encounter a bookor kids that used the word Booger as often as this one does and I include William Joyce s Billy s Booger in that statement But Yanghao is also honestly unny Literally the irst thing he does in the book is say on the airplane to his brother holding up a barf bag with evident glee Jingwen Jingwen I m puking in this bag I mean right there I was his Funny then Check But then there s just the act that Lai is a really good artist You notice this in a lot of little ways Consider the moment when Yanghao right at the beginning of the book drops the rainbow cake rom home which by the way a clever book group would point out ties in perfectly with the baking of the rainbow cake at the end of the book First you have on the left hand page Yanghao s enormous hands reaching towards you as he says Letmeholdthecake Then on the opposite page Lai cuts the image into two parts A panel at the top laid over the image beneath shows the brothers looking down Yanghao s left hand is open in this The Glass Ocean funny little position You know that moment when you ve caused an accident and you just pause there as if by holding still you can undo what you did The smashed cake diagram that makes up the bottom half of the page is in and of itself a work of beauty. Iness Jingwen daydreams about making all the cakes on the menu of Pie in the Sky the bakery hisather had planned to open before he unexpectedly passed away The only problem is his mother has laid down one major rule the brothers are not to use the oven while she's at work As Jing. My ull review can be ound in my blog The Uiet PondThere Are Books That I Love And There Are PondThere are books that I love and there are like Pie in the Sky that stay in my heart orever I loved this book so so much prepare or me to YELL about this book A MG novel The Leadership Gap: What Gets Between You and Your Greatness filled with gorgeous illustrations by Lai herself Itollows two Chinese brothers who move to Australia with their mother and how Jingwen the older brother navigates the challenges of moving to a new place This story explores immigration assimilation language barriers and how they affect kids Jingwen vs his little brother s age and also grief Though this book made me laugh to myself The Leadership Gap for its sweet and wholesome narrative there were also parts that HIT ME IN THE FEELS I tear up just thinking about it I just Ielt this book so deeply I love it with my whole heart This is up there as one of my Zero to Five: 70 Essential Parenting Tips Based on Science (and What I've Learned So Far) favourite MG books everTriggercontent warning view spoilerdeath of a parent hide spoiler This year I stumbled into an unexpected pattern Though I didn t uite mean to I ended up reading a whole slew of middle grade novels that wereunny I m not avoiding the serious stuff but through a series of unlikely events I Serenity Role Playing Game found myself diving deep intounny book after Save the Cupcake! funny book Now a hilarious novelor children can go one of two ways It can be simply amusing Tressed to Kill (Southern Beauty Shop, for the sake of amusement making no attempt at being meaningful in any way I have a grudging respector these books since I think it s a lot harder to get them published in today s market The publishing world of the early 21st century has little tolerance Tressed to Kill for meaningless whimsy Far common then are the books that lookunny and then when you least expect it hit you in the gut with BAM Pathos It s not a bad way to go about things if the writing can pull off the switch Pin in the Sky is by all accounts a debut but it sure doesn t eel that way Gracefully switching between text and comics comics and text author Remy Lai eeds breadcrumbs or accurately cake crumbs of humor and seuential art to kids luring them towards a storyline with a deeper darker meaning For the kid that avoids serious stories like the plague Pie in the Sky is the perfect gateway drug There s a whole lotta sad going on here and a whole lotta humor as well The end result is a balancing act that will keep you absorbed and reading until the endSome kids love sports and some love reading and others love dance or games Jingwen loves cake Sort of makes sense His grandparents run a cake shop and his dad was always making cakes before he died In act his dad was even going to start his own ancy cake shop called Pie in the Sky where he own ancy cake shop called Pie in the Sky where he Jingwen would make things like chocolate raspberry tortes Neapolitan mousse cake apple mille euille and Now Jingwen has moved to Australia with his mom and annoying little brother Yanghao He doesn t speak the language He doesn t have any riends And there s something about his dad s death that s weighing him down like having heavy seashells in your pockets The only thing Jingwen can think to do is to try and bake every single one of the cakes his ather was going to make or Pie in the Sky The trouble His mom has orbidden him rom using the stove while she s away and she s away all the time Now faced with being moved back a grade if he doesn t improve with being moved back a grade if he doesn t improve school Jingwen dedicates himself heart and soul to cake baking But when your problems have nothing to do with pastries how do you inally come to realize what s really important The thing about Pie in the Sky is that it s technically playing air right rom the very start Though the reveal that the dad is dead doesn t happen until you re already a couple chapters in and by then you re hooked it s early enough that it doesn t The Gingerbread Man Loose in the School feel like the author has pulled a weird tonal switcheroo on you But let s examine the book sirst chapter You can tell a lot about a book by its The Cutting Room: A Novel of Suspense first chapter Ifor example Lai set this book up as some happy go lucky spree you might eel betrayed later on when things get bleak But rom the get go we understand instantly that 1 Jingwen and his immediate amily have left their home to move to Australia 2 Not everyone rom home came along 3 Yanghao is annoying and hilarious 4 As indicated by the thoroughly smashed cake this story is going to be an interesting combination of awkward sad and unny all at once All this in one chapter where the text is routinely punctuated with comic style. When eleven year old Jingwen moves to a new country he eels like he's landed on Mars School is torture making riends is impossible since he doesn’t speak English and he's often stuck looking after his extremely irritating little brother YanghaoTo distract himself rom the lonel. ,