Friday, October 17, 2014

Abby Spencer Goes to Bollywood by Varsha Bajaj

Abby Spencer Goes to BollywoodAbby has a seriously allergic reaction after eating coconut, and the doctor asks if her father has the same allergy. Good question. Abby's never met her father, and he lives in India. Her mother tells her a little bit about the man, but Abby decides to search for more information on the computer. She discovers her father is actually a Bollywood movie star, kind of like India's version of Brad Pitt. The next thing she knows, Abby is 8,000 miles away in Mumbai meeting him for the first time. It's a strange mixture of excitement and sadness as she discovers her father's life as a star and then sees the poverty of the people living outside his walls. However, Abby can't let the public know she's Naveen's daughter, because it might ruin his image as a sexy, movie god. It's hard to develop a loving relationship with her father while keeping it a secret.

Most of the setting was in India, so the author was able to share cultural information. I appreciated the effort to contrast Naveen's life of riches with the lives of poor people forced to live on the streets. I also liked when Abby and Naveen showed concern and empathy for the needy. Abby's character seemed to adapt to the whirlwind of finding her father and traveling to India pretty easily.

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