Sunday, June 14, 2020

Making the Sale: Mindy Kim and the Yummy Seaweed Business by Lyla Lee

I'm seven and one-half years old--not old enough to have a puppy--or at least, that's what my dad says.

Our apartment in California wasn't big enough for a puppy. I looked it up and the internet says that puppies need lots of room to run outside. Now that we have moved into a house with a big backyard, we can really get a puppy!

Mandy Kim has got her work cut out for her. Her mom had been sick for a while and died only a few months ago and her dad is still sad and seems overwhelmed with everything. Their old things look unfamiliar and lost in their new house. Mindy is sad, too, and worried about starting at a new school in Florida. Dad says they both need a fresh start, but Mindy feels a little lost in this new place, too.

Wishbone School looks nice, but her best friend Diya is not there. And the kids all look the same, and no one looks like Mindy. And lunch is terrible. One kid says her kimchi smells bad, and all the boys laugh at her seaweed snacks.

But she likes her after-school babysitter, Unni. Her mom makes kimchi. amd she has an adorable Maltese dog to play with. Mindy feels much better about her new life, so the next day she asks the one girl she knows if she can sit with her, and when she opens her first packet of seaweed snacks, Sally asks to try one. All the other kids try them out, and only one doesn't like them.

Suddenly I had a brilliant plan. A very yummy seaweed business plan!

Mindy stocks up on seaweed snacks and next day at lunch she trades them to her table-mates instead of giving them away. And then Sally gives her another idea.
"Did you ever think of selling your snacks?"

Hey! ... "Maybe I could sell my snacks! Then I could buy a puppy for dad and me!"

I didn't even know it was against the rules to sell food at school! Nobody told me!

On only her her third day at Wishbone School, Mindy finds herself in the principal's office. Dr. Mortimer lets her off with a stern warning and orders her to study the rules for the school on-line over the weekend. Sally is angry because she is blamed for telling Mindy to sell snacks, and now Mindy has no money for a puppy and no friends either.

The only thing to do is to tell her dad everything. He understands and tells her he's sure she will do the right thing, in Lyla Lee's first book in her new beginning chapter book series, Mindy Kim and the Yummy Seaweed Business (1) (Aladdin Books, 2020). Being the new kid in school is always hard, especially when her new school is so different from her old school, but Mindy is soon on her way, with a new friend and perhaps a new puppy to look forward to. Author Lee's realistic chapter fiction has her doughty character take on tough issues, dealing with problems of diversity and death of a parent with honesty and strength. Share this one with Lyla Lee's next in this series, Mindy Kim and the Lunar New Year Parade (2)

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