My Basmati Bat Mitzvah: 11/11/13
My Basmati Bat Mitzvah by Paula J. Freedman is about an Indian-American girl trying to find the right balance between her Hindu and Jewish upbringing as the day of her bat mitzvah is rapidly approaching.
Amid all the chaos that is her multicultural life, an heirloom sari is damaged by an over turned candle. The damaged sari becomes the catalyst for Tara to find herself and bring her diverse and squabbling family together.
I enjoyed the multicultural aspects of Tara's family and that of her friends. The book highlights the similarities the friend share while still letting them shine as well rounded, believable individuals.
Tara's experience is paired with her bat mitzvah sermon, namely that of Joseph an d his many colored coat. The sari / coat motif / moral is tastefully done, avoiding the usual moralistic heavy handedness, opting instead for humor. It's a tightly crafted and well told story.