Love across cultures, or in spite of it
The author deftly portrays the narrator's inner and outer struggles while treating every character sympathetically. You feel for the narrator as she struggles to forge her own identity and also for her mother who struggles with a broken heart when the young man she has fallen in love with marries an American woman. Her heartbreak is compounded by seeing her daughter become Westernized. She is scandalized, yet ultimately acquiescent, knowing there is little she can do to stop it. Yet, is her resentment of her daughter's Americanization a projection of her resentment for the American woman who stole the heart of the young man she loved?
The ending was rather ambiguous, leaving the impression that mother and daughter reconciled, yet also that some tensions remain unresolved. Perhaps that is deliberate, but I wonder if the author just didn't know how to properly end the story.