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review SPOILER ALERT! 2018-03-28 01:22
Yaqui Delgado Wants to Kick Your Ass
Yaqui Delgado Wants to Kick Your Ass - Meg Medina

I understood what it's like to dread encountering the bully during middle and high schools and targeted for no reason. I also understood why Piddy didn't ask for help at first. I remember trying to ask the adults help when bullies were harassing me, but it didn't work well for me and made the bullying a bit worse. However, I couldn't connect well with Piddy despite facing some similar situations as her. Part of the reason has to do with Piddy's character not being developed enough and being passive most of the time. For example, Chapter 38 is one of the few times when she gets active, and it's brief. I knew she has dreams of being a vet, a studious student and likes elephants, but for some reasons, her personality didn't click with me. Despite having her name in the title, Yaqui appears in the story a few times in the book. As a result, she is a flat character with little personality. All I knew about Yaqui was that she comes from a rough neighborhood and has a boyfriend. The supporting cast is similarly underdeveloped. 

 

The reason why Yaqui has small appearances in the book is that the story is not solely focused on bullying. While bullying does play a part in this story, most of that is pushed aside during the second act where it focused more on the missing father and romance subplots. Those subplots were really uninteresting for me. The missing dad subplot was melodramatic and ripped out of some soap opera that clashed with the mostly realistic atmosphere of the novel. The romance between Joey and Piddy was underdeveloped and lacked chemistry. Also, those subplots hardly had anything to do with the main conflict of the story. I wish those pages were instead devoted to something like Rob's personal experiences with bullying and compare it with Piddy's. The last part of the book becomes much better than the middle section, but it ends quickly and a little disappointing. Piddy transfers back to her old school and still slightly shaken up from her experiences. I wished it ended there because the passages talking about her return were bittersweet. Then after that part, she receives an acceptance letter from a science magnet school that Piddy wants to go to and celebrates by having a dance party in a salon. I disliked this part because it was extremely cheesy.

 

I'm disappointed to say that I didn't like this book that much. I did want to love this book, but I couldn't bring myself to do it.

 

 

(spoiler show)
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text 2015-09-18 19:04
YA Books with at least one Latino main character
Biggest Flirts[BIGGEST FLIRTS][Paperback] - JenniferEchols
From What I Remember... - Stacy Kramer,Valerie Thomas
Aristotle and Dante Discover the Secrets of the Universe - Benjamin Alire Sáenz
Yaqui Delgado Wants to Kick Your Ass - Meg Medina
Out of Darkness (Fiction - Young Adult) - Ashley Hope Pérez
The Weight of Feathers: A Novel - Anna-Marie McLemore
More Happy Than Not - Adam Silvera
When Reason Breaks - Cindy L. Rodriguez
Dream Things True - Marie F. Marquardt
Perfect Chemistry - Simone Elkeles

Biggest Flirts - JenniferEchols 

From What I Remember... - Stacy Kramer,Valerie Thomas  

Aristotle and Dante Discover the Secrets of the Universe - Benjamin Alire Sáenz  

Yaqui Delgado Wants to Kick Your Ass - Meg Medina  

Joyride - Anna Banks  

Out of Darkness (Fiction - Young Adult) - Ashley Hope Pérez  

The Weight of Feathers: A Novel - Anna-Marie McLemore  

Forever for a Year - B.T. Gottfred  

Dream Things True - Marie Marquardt  

Perfect Chemistry - Simone Elkeles

Chain Reaction - Simone Elkeles 

When Reason Breaks - Cindy L. Rodriguez  

More Happy Than Not - Adam Silvera  

Kiss Kill Vanish - Jessica Martinez

Rules of Attraction - Simone Elkeles  

He Forgot to Say Goodbye - Benjamin Alire Sáenz  

On the Edge - Allison van Diepen  

Before We Were Free - Julia Alvarez  

dancergirl - Carol M. Tanzman   

When the Stars Go Blue - Caridad Ferrer 

Snitch - Allison van Diepen   

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review 2015-04-27 03:56
Yaqui Delgado Wants to Kick Your Ass - Meg Medina

I have always been curious about high school and social media. I was already leaving college when Facebook and MySpace were on the cusp. Personally, I didn’t like high school. I imagine adding Facebook to my experience and I think the pictures, the tagging, and the friend lists would have enhanced an already bad experience. It is too much exposure for a time myriad with uncertainty.

 

This is why I was curious about “Yaqui Delgado Wants to Kick Your Ass.” I have been on a YA kick lately, and I love it when a new story finds you and surprises you. I also thought Meg Medina’s choice of title was catching and clever. Because who hasn’t been threatened by some kid in high school or middle school?

 

Poor Piddy gets threatened during her first month at Daniel Jones High. The instigator is Yaqui, who complains that Piddy has a big ass and shouldn’t be looking at Yaqui’s boyfriend. Of course Piddy has never talked to Yaqui or her boyfriend before. I laughed when I read this, and not at Piddy’s problem. Teenagers are so limited in their thinking. Everything is emotional, any small thing exacerbated into something bigger.

 

Imagine if that little something turns into a gang fight, and imagine if it was recorded and seen on the Internet. Piddy gets beat up and her hell is taped and posted on YouTube. The result is so traumatic that Piddy transfers back to her old school. If this sounds gritty, it is.

 

But there were also glimmers of bright light. I loved the Manhattan trip Piddy takes with Joey Halper after her assault. Even if she is skipping school, who wouldn’t after what she has been through? Joey has been her friend forever and would know more than anyone about being beaten down. Moments between them were among my favorite in the book.

 

I think Piddy made a wise choice to transfer schools soon after the fight. She knew it was the right choice for her at the time, even if people around her disagreed. Life is full of tough decisions, and Piddy and Joey had to learn early about some things ending up unfair. It happens in high school and it happens in life.

 

Things end comfortably when Piddy later gets accepted to the magnet science school she applied for. She deserves it, even though I think it was less important than her overcoming trauma. Which leaves me to my final question that I wish Medina could have answered: What happens to Piddy’s Ma?

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review 2015-02-01 00:00
Yaqui Delgado Wants to Kick Your Ass
Yaqui Delgado Wants to Kick Your Ass - Meg Medina Winner of the 2014 Pura Belpré Author Award In Meg Medina’s compelling new novel, a Latina teen is targeted by a bully at her new school — and must discover resources she never knew she had. One morning before school, some girl tells Piddy Sanchez that Yaqui Delgado hates her and wants to kick her ass. Piddy doesn’t even know who Yaqui is, never mind what she’s done to piss her off. Word is that Yaqui thinks Piddy is stuck-up, shakes her stuff when she walks, and isn’t Latin enough with her white skin, good grades, and no accent. And Yaqui isn’t kidding around, so Piddy better watch her back. At first Piddy is more concerned with trying to find out more about the father she’s never met and how to balance honors courses with her weekend job at the neighborhood hair salon. But as the harassment escalates, avoiding Yaqui and her gang starts to take over Piddy’s life. Is there any way for Piddy to survive without closing herself off or running away? In an all-too-realistic novel, Meg Medina portrays a sympathetic heroine who is forced to decide who she really is.
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review 2015-01-22 00:21
Yaqui Delgado Wants to Kick Your Ass
Yaqui Delgado Wants to Kick Your Ass - Meg Medina

One morning before school, some girl tells Piddy Sanchez that Yaqui Delgado hates her and wants to kick her ass. Piddy doesn’t even know who Yaqui is, never mind what she’s done to piss her off. Word is that Yaqui thinks Piddy is stuck-up, shakes her stuff when she walks, and isn’t Latin enough with her white skin, good grades, and no accent. And Yaqui isn’t kidding around, so Piddy better watch her back. At first Piddy is more concerned with trying to find out more about the father she’s never met and how to balance honors courses with her weekend job at the neighborhood hair salon. But as the harassment escalates, avoiding Yaqui and her gang starts to take over Piddy’s life. Is there any way for Piddy to survive without closing herself off or running away? In an all-too-realistic novel, Meg Medina portrays a sympathetic heroine who is forced to decide who she really is. (source)

 

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