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I Want Candy

by Kim Wong Keltner

      At first glance, Kim Wong Keltnerís I Want Candy, with its plot detailing the life of Candance Ong, a brainy Chinese girl who is trying to escape her life of working in her parentsí Chinese restaurant, would not seem a very exciting book. But, through clever dialogue and character development, Keltner delivers a very entertaining story.

One thing that Candance wants is to have a real friend, and the author uses this desire to explore the amount of abuse young people will tolerate in order to fit in. Candaceís would-be-friend Ruby treats her in ways that one would certainly not consider friendly. This relationship makes for interesting reading.

The situations that Candance gets herself involved in are far fetched, but Keltner makes them not only believable but most entertaining. Even though Candaceís sexual involvement with various men borders on the serious, Keltner has a knack for making some of the scenes comic while still retaining the seriousness of the situation.

Young (or even older) women will enjoy this book as they remember those awkward times when they were coming to terms with their sexuality.

Candanceís abrupt change from a girl just short of being involved in early sex to a model daughter makes the reader ask why there isnít material in the novel to substantiate this character change, but, over all, it is a delightful read as the reader celebrates Candanceís reformation.

The Book

Avon / an imprint of HarperCollins
January 29, 2008
More at
NOTE: Explicit Sex

The Reviewer

Willie Elliott
Reviewed 2008
© 2008