Clara Lee And The Apple Pie Dream


Clara Lee awoke one morning very unsettled. She had dreamed that her grandfather died. After some nudging, he got Clara Lee to tell him about the dream. Then he laughed. In Korean culture, having a dream about someone dying is actually good luck. Clara Lee hoped he was right because the Little Miss Apple Pie competition was in a few days and Clara Lee wanted to show just how American she is. 

BTSYA / Teen Reader:
This is an excellent story that shows children that if you believe that you can do something, have good luck and the correct level of confidence, you can achieve your goal. This is a well-written book with very good illustrations. It is easy for young readers to understand the message. Young girls will really enjoy reading it, and I would buy this as a gift for a young girl. The only downside for me was that there are parts where the story gets a little repetitive and boring. Overall, it is a great book to motivate children and show them that with belief and confidence you can achieve anything that you want to achieve in life.

Parent Perspective:
This is a lovely story. Clara Lee is as girl-next-door as they come, and the author does a beautiful job illustrating how multicultural families are American. The writing is crisp, descriptive, and totally accessible to transitional readers. Clara uses words like "un-cheer-up-able" which is as kid-friendly as it gets.

Reader Enjoyment Factors:

Realistic characters, an all-American story, and excellent writing make this a must-read choice for young readers.

Content Awareness Factors:


Type of Book:
This is a lightly illustrated chapter book about a young Korean American girl.
Educational Themes:

This is an enjoyable read as a family. It opens the door to talk about your family life and your cultural background. There are themes of sibling rivalry, superstitions, friendship (and apologies), and (though subtly) bigotry. You might ask your reader how they would answer the question about what makes their town/neighborhood special.

Reading Level:
Recommended Age To Read By Yourself:
8 and Up
Recommended Age To Read Together:
7 and Up
Age of child:
Teen STAR Review Team, Be the Star You Are!™
Purchase Recommendation:
Buy! This is a lovely story that will call to young girls to read again and again - especially when they want to hold a little good luck in their hands.

Title Clara Lee and the Apple Pie Dream
Author Jenny Han
Publisher Little, Brown Books for Young Readers © 2011
Illustrators Julia Kuo
ISBN 9780316070386
Material Paperback
Cost $14.99
Genres Easy Reader, Family, Growing Up, Asia | Asian People
be the star you are
Reminder: Cover images, and links are affiliate links. The Reading Tub can earn income via purchases made via these links. 100% of any income goes directly to our literacy mission.
Other Reviews:

You May Also Like...

Check out these books you may also like


Steve Voake
Candlewick Press, Walker Books Group © 2008


Megan McDonald


Gerry O'Brien
Acorn Press © 2006