Cloudwish by Fiona Wood (ARC)
Our Rating: 3.5
Goodreads Rating: 3.88
This Book in a Song: Lay It All On Me (feat. Ed Sheeran) by Rudimental
For Vân Uoc Phan, fantasies fall into two categories: nourishing, or pointless. Daydreaming about Billy Gardiner, for example? Pointless. It always left her feeling sick, as though she’d eaten too much sugar.
Vân Uoc doesn’t believe in fairies, zombies, vampires, Father Christmas – or magic wishes. She believes in keeping a low profile: real life will start when school finishes.
But when she attracts the attention of Billy Gardiner, she finds herself in an unwelcome spotlight.
Not even Jane Eyre can help her now.
Wishes were not a thing.
They were not.
Wishes were a thing.
Wishes that came true were sometimes a thing.
Wishes that came true because of magic were not a thing!
I recieved an ARC from Little, Brown Books for Young Readers.
Cloudwish by Fiona Wood is a charming story about a young girl with immigrant parents just trying to everything out. Vân Uoc Phan is stuck in between cultures. While she does not completely fit in at school, she does not fit in at home either.
One day Vân Uoc makes a wish that her long time crush, Billy Gardner, would like her. All of a sudden he does. Their relationship was definitely not my favorite. I just did not understand how all of a sudden he had taken interest in her. There were many time when people told her that Billy was a bad person but blinded by her admiration, she did not listen. This frustrated me because there were not many times that he proved himself worthy of her.
While I did not like the relationship between Billy and Vân Uoc, I really like the story line with Vân Uoc‘s mother. It helped me understand how difficult and emotionally draining escaping Vietnam and coming to America was like.
Personally, Vân Uoc is a very interesting and relatable character. My mom moved from Hong Kong to the US when she was young so I can imagine her going through similar problems fitting in as Vân Uoc. Vân Uoc gave the reader a look inside the workings of an asain household. While it seemed very stereotypical, it was also very realistic.
Vân Uoc‘s obsession with Jane Eyre really helped me connect and understand her personally. By showing who Vân Uoc‘s inspiration and role model is, Fiona Wood was able to convey different aspects of her personality through the fictional character.
Overall, I enjoyed the story but the relationship between Billy and Vân Uoc brought the rating down. My favorite aspect of the book is how Fiona Wood incorperates bits of the classic, Jane Eyre, and twists it to apply to modern times.