Reviews & Recommendations

Hidden Gems: American Born Chinese, by Gene Yang

american born chinese

What did you do this summer? I’ve been reading my way through our new graphic novel collection. One of my favorites so far is American Born Chinese by Gene Luen Yang.

Winner of the Printz Award for teen literature, it weaves together three seemingly unrelated stories into a compelling and complex fable about growing up and being yourself. Painful teenage crushes and hilarious revenge battles are narrated with well-timed panel layouts and expressive illustrations. The heart of the story is the friendship of two boys.

By the last scene of the book, I was surprised by how attached I was to the main character’s nerdy and confident best friend, Wei-Chen Sun. But my favorite character was the Monkey King, slighted by the gods and kung-fu-ing his way through their cocktail party, then fuming under a mountain of rock for five centuries. I guess I’m a sucker for a hot-head!

You can find this book in our Graphic Novel collection, at this address: PN6727.Y36 A54 2007.

–Review by Michele Van Hoeck

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