Also Known as Sadzia! The Belly Dancer!

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9780060221621: Also Known as Sadzia! The Belly Dancer!

Under pressure from her mother to lose weight in an exercise class, a sixteen-year-old Jewish girl rebels and joins a class in belly dancing where she finds independence, romance, and self-confidence--and an intriguing drummer named Sumir.

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From School Library Journal:

Grade 6-9 Sandy Fishman tries to escape the clutches of an over-involved and quintessentially Jewish mother. Mom's dreams for her chunky daughter include a date for the prom, an early and successful marriage, and a new slimness. Lured by exotic music, Sandy joins a belly dancing class, and to her surprise, she enjoys the dancing, by means of which she not only annoys her mother but trims her figure as well. After some twists and turns of the plot, mother and daughter reach an understanding of sorts; passive Dad speaks up at last; and Sandy, new boyfriend in tow, goes to the prom as a belly dancer, not as a guest. There are several subplots; for example, a slim friend with a highly-structured life and a laid-back, flower-child mother is offered as an obvious contrast to Sandy and her mother. There is also an elderly widow who is teaching Sandy to speak Yiddish and supplying her with cookies and grandmotherly advice, another zinger for mom. Gerber's writing is only adequate, with shallow characterizations and an obvious plot, manipulated for a happy ending. The insight into the world of belly dancing is an unusual aspect, but the whole ethnic tone of the book is gratuitous and offensive, with Sandy's mother an especially unfortunate stereotype. Ruth Levien, Rockville Centre Public Library, N.Y.
Copyright 1987 Reed Business Information, Inc.

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Merrill Joan Gerber
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