Tuesday, July 31, 2012
Battle Hymn of the Tiger Mother
Tiger Mother. NY: Penguin.
Adult / Adult for YA Biography - Memoir
I'm including this book on my blog because I actually think teenagers who read this will like it - in a horrifying way. If nothing else, it will probably make most quite appreciative for the parenting styles they enjoy in their own homes! There are plenty of "oh-no-she-didn't" moments that are funny and scary at the same time.
If you read this book as a memoir, which I believe it was intended to be, and not as a parenting guide, it's a great book. Chua is brutally honest about her behavior and doesn't make excuses. She is, after all, a Chinese Mother and aspires to be nothing else (aside from a successful career woman herself). It introduces an interesting premise that any child can achieve greatness when they are forced to do so.
What would be really interesting is to hear from the daughters, maybe ten years down the line. Do they love their mother? Do they yearn to be something other than what she created? Do they have emotional problems? And how in the world did they feel when their last minute handmade birthday cards to their mother were REJECTED? (How I wish I'd have tried that trick a time or two!)
It's a very quick read and the writing flows well, and you definitely go through all kinds of feelings for everyone in the family -- including the dog that can't perform to the Chinese Mother's expectations!
If you'd like to look at pictures of the family and/or read a bit about The Tiger Mother and her family, go to her website at http://amychua.com/ .