Ha, Thu-Huong

views updated

Ha, Thu-Huong

PERSONAL:

Education: Attends Princeton University.

ADDRESSES:

Home—NJ. E-mail—[email protected] net.

AWARDS, HONORS:

PUSH novel contest prize, for Hail Caesar.

WRITINGS:

Hail Caesar (novel), PUSH (New York, NY), 2007.

SIDELIGHTS:

Thu-Huong Ha began writing her debut novel, Hail Caesar, when she was fifteen. It deals with themes that are common in many American high schools: popularity, conformity, sex, and the superficiality of teen culture. As Ha put it in an interview for PUSH, the publication that awarded her a writing internship during which she completed most of the novel, "I've always been really interested in what I like to call the ‘asshole phenomenon’—that is, guys who get away with being jerks simply because they are jerks. And I've always wanted to write a story that was sort of an asshole-meets-girl redemption story, but it turned out to really be the first part. "The novel's protagonist is John, a spoiled jock known as Caesar because of his ability to seduce any girl he wants. The only exception is the new student, Eva, who laughs at him. Naturally, he is immediately intrigued, and the two begin to develop a relationship.

By talking about deeper things than partying, Eva prompts John to realize that his life has been going nowhere. School Library Journal reviewer Donna Rosenblum felt that Ha "tells it like it is" in this novel; a contributor to Publishers Weekly, on the other hand, found Eva less than entirely convincing as John's savior. In Teens Read Too, Long Nguyen praised Ha's writing talent and precocious wisdom, concluding that she "enters the world of a young-adult audience with explosions and purpose and great effect. "

BIOGRAPHICAL AND CRITICAL SOURCES:

PERIODICALS

Publishers Weekly, January 22, 2007, review of Hail Caesar, p. 185.

School Library Journal, May, 2007, Donna Rosenblum, review of Hail Caesar, p. 132.

ONLINE

Teens Read Too,http://teensreadtoo.com/ (July 28, 2007), Long Nguyen, review of Hail Caesar.

PUSH Web site,http://www.thisispush.com/ (July 28, 2007).