American Born Chinese by Gene Luen Yang

American Born Chinese by Gene Luen Yang

In this one, he weaves together 3 stories: the monkey king, a Chinese-American boy who is trying to fit in at school, and cousin ChinKee, the racist stereotype of Chinese people. I think this would be a good book for discussion groups for young adults. It has themes of racism, identity, and bullying too. It also can introduce Westerners to a bit of Chinese culture.

The ChinKee bits are hilarious because the stereotypes are so bad. His dialogue goes something like this: ““Harro, I rove Amellicah””. The ChinKee parts are the boy struggling with his identity. The other American kids see him as a Chinese kid. It’s hard not to think this story isn’t partly biographical.

The drawings are great too. I really liked this story it ticks all my boxes: it’s funny story, and has some Chinese history in it.

This author also did the excellent Boxers & Saints series about the Boxer rebellion in China.

Rating: ★★★★

Book #4 in my My 2020 Reading Challenge

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