Below, you'll see any text that was highlighted with comments from the reviewer.
Message to Readers
PLEASE PEER REVIEW BEFORE JUNE 16! THANK YOU! Will you let me know if the fourth and fifth paragraph need more improvements? Thank you!
I admired how you added descriptions of how you felt and what it was like with your family too, it really gave the piece a more personal tone. That personal touch of the piece really helps readers connect to your piece on a more deeper level.
Your piece is about something "more than food," it's about being with family and enjoying the times you spend together. I absolutely adore the way you describe your family in a way that can relate to readers. The part where you wrote, "Like always, I ask my mother to order a “Niu Nai Cha” (which renders ‘boba milk tea’ in all Rowland Heights cafés) because I am too timid to talk to the cashier," really connected to me, because this is something I do too. By providing descriptions of your time with family, you really open up the idea that food is more than just something you eat, it's something you share with family.
I feel that you can expand more on the idea of these "boba runs." Why are they important? Why do you guys go to a boba shop?
In this piece, it doesn't just focus on one type of food, it jumps from different types; from fried fish to boba milk tea to baked pastries. It seems abrupt, the way you jump from topic to topic. For instance, you talk about a family meal together at the beginning, but by the end you're talking about "Gilbert Culture." I understand that you're trying to connect how important your family meals and boba runs in California were, with the changes you experience now in Arizona. However, there could be a smoother transition from each of these topics.
I absolutely love the beginning. By describing the setting of your meal, it really pulls the reader in by making them feel like they're there themselves. If you really wanted to change anything, I would say to expand more on that idea of the scenario. However, it is wonderful just the way it is too.
From this piece, I can already tell that you're a fantastic writer. Your emotions and ability to transport the reader to that exact place are beautifully executed. As you continue to improve this draft, be sure to keep in mind your pacing and the connection between topics. Just like with how the pastries are made at the Ni Ni Bakery you described, think of each topic as an ingredient that you have to craftfully blend together to make a delicious savory bun.
Being an Asian American as well, I can relate to this piece. Reading your writing made me reminisce on the times where I went to restaurants and boba shops too. You have a writing style that is both eloquent and able to connect with your readers, which are qualities that help tie this piece together.