She’s So Money

Cherry Cheva, Author . HarperTeen $16.99 (290p) ISBN 978-0-06-128855-5

Maya Naravadee, a high-achieving senior works nights at her parents’ Thai restaurant and dreams of escaping Michigan with a scholarship to Stanford. But when she is left in charge of the restaurant for a weekend, she ends up with a $10,000 fine from the health department. Rather than 'fess up, she cooks up a scheme with the most popular guy at school, lazy, arrogant and rich Camden King, to do his homework for him and his friends, and then recruits her own friends to join her—and skims their pay. In her first novel, Cheva, a writer for the TV show Family Guy , proves herself adept at relaying the dynamics of Maya’s family: the scenes set at the restaurant show Maya under stress but nevertheless silently proud of her hardworking, traditional parents. Maya also gets off some pretty smart lines (“All I could think about was how happy it would make me to add convenience to your life by doing your homework for you,” she deadpans to Camden when setting up their arrangement). The plot takes a brief respite from implausibility so that Maya can register the inevitable lesson about honesty, then spins right back into fantasyland with a blatantly jerry-rigged happy ending. But if Cheva can find a topic as vital as her best writing here, her work will bear close watching. Ages 12-up. (Feb.)

Reviewed on: 01/07/2008
Release date: 02/01/2008
Genre: Children's
Paperback - 290 pages - 978-0-06-128853-1
Library Binding - 290 pages - 978-0-06-128852-4
Ebook - 304 pages - 978-0-06-188155-8
Peanut Press/Palm Reader - 304 pages - 978-0-06-188153-4
Open Ebook - 304 pages - 978-0-06-188149-7
Ebook - 304 pages - 978-0-06-188150-3
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