Reviews

Level Up by Thien Pham, Gene Luen Yang

aeclark12's review against another edition

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5.0

An imaginative look at a coming-of-age dilemma -- career selection based upon parental or personal interests.

hyzerchan's review

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3.0

Fun Indy Comic about a life tormented by video game addiction. Very applicable to the modern college goer.

_reading_with_kate_'s review

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Oh my goodness this was strange. In a good way?

reader4evr's review

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4.0

I just sat & read this at the library and I enjoyed it...brought back memories of playing Nintendo when I was younger.

I haven't read American Born Chinese but I heard this one was good. I wish I had read this earlier because I had a lot of boys at my other school who loved video games & graphic novels. I think they would have liked this because this shows both sides of perusing video games for a career. I wonder if this book was kind of autobiographical about the author.

I liked the theme of family in this book and how it plays apart of your life. I thought the art work was fun and I liked how some parts were in color and others in black and white.

bookph1le's review against another edition

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4.0

I really liked the way this book handled the struggle between a young man trying to figure out what he wants from his life, but being waylaid by his parents' vision for him. As a parent, I understand the impulse to try to get your kids to take the "safe" path in life, so I like books like this, that give me perspective on the unintended harm parents can do when they push their kids in directions opposite the ones their kids want to go. It's a theme that very much resonates with me.

What I'd like to see less of is the casual sexism. I cringed when one of the male characters said he liked his women more "womanly". What does that even mean? And I'm also bothered by this author's tendency to use gendered terms as insults--feminizing men who don't confine to masculine stereotypes. That really bothers me, both because it's offensive to women (What's *wrong* with being feminine? Why do we live in a society that equates being "feminine" with being weak?), AND because it's offensive to men, who are supposed to fit into a very narrow definition of what constitutes manhood. So while I do appreciate what Yang has to say about the struggles of being an ethnic minority in the U.S., it really bothers me that he's throwing women under the bus at the same time. This is why intersectionality is crucial, folks.

skiwi's review against another edition

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dark emotional hopeful sad slow-paced
  • Plot- or character-driven? Character
  • Strong character development? Yes
  • Loveable characters? It's complicated
  • Diverse cast of characters? Yes
  • Flaws of characters a main focus? Yes

4.0

byp's review

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3.0

This is fun, thoughtful, and readable, but I don't know how I feel about the ending.

roseleaf24's review

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4.0

Wonderful storytelling. I love how much Yang is able to pack into the few words of a graphic novel. I missed his illustrations, though.

coleycole's review

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3.0

Good, solid, but not as transcendently awesome as Yang's American Born Chinese or The Eternal Smile. Still, pretty satisfying.

sparklethenpop's review against another edition

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3.0

This was a quick read. It was a great exploration of life and parental expectations, not quite as good as American Born Chinese though.