MULTI-CULTURAL BOOK LIST
Abelove, Jo An Go and Come Back
Late one day, just before
dinnertime in the Peruvian jungle
Alexie, Sherman The Lone Ranger, Tonto First Fight in Heaven Collection of short stories that paints a grimly ironic portrait of life in and around the Spokane Indian Reservation. These twenty-two interlinked tales are narrated by characters raised on government issued cheese, and yet are filled with passion and affection, myth and dream. The author depicts the distance between Indians and whites, reservation Indians and urban Indians, men and women and between modern Indians and the traditions of the past.
Alvarez, Julia Before We Were Free
Story of Anita de la Torre, a
twelve-year old girl living in the
started terrorizing her family for their suspected opposition to the country’s dictator.
Alvarez, Julia Finding Miracles
Milly Kaufman is an ordinary
American teenager living in
homeland to discover the story of her birth.
Alvarez, Julia How the Garcia Girls Lost Their Accents
When their father’s part in a
plot against a cruel dictator forces them to flee the
Alvarez, Julia How Tia Lola Came to Stay
When Miguel’s Tia Lola comes
Lola would go back to the island.
Alvarez, Julia YO!
This is a novel about the
collisions of art and reality, intellect and emotion, American culture and her
memories and in two contrasting cultures.
Na, An A Step From Heaven
When four year old Young Ju Park
first hears words Mi Gook—Korean for “
Still, as Young Ju grows from child to adolescent in her new home she finds a surprising new voice—neither purely Korean nor American, but uniquely her own—which allows her to speak the truth that no one else in her family dares to say. (Winner of the 2002 Michael L. Printz Award).
Anaya, Rudolfo Bless Me, Ultima
Antonio Maez is six years old
when Ultima comes to stay with his family in
Arana, Marie American Chica: Two worlds, One childhood.
In her father’s Peruvian family,
Marie Arana was taught to be a proper lady, yet in her mother’s American family
she learned to shoot a gun, break a horse, and
snap a chicken’s neck for dinner. Arana
shuttled easily between these deeply separate cultures for years. But only when she immigrated with her family
whose cultural identity was split in half.
Bagdasauan, Adam Forgotten Fire
In 1915 Vahan Kenderian is
living a life of privilege as the youngest son of a wealthy Armenian family in
Baldacci, David Wish You Well
Precocious 12 year old Louisa
Mae Cardinal lives in the hectic
experiencing adventures both tragic and comic.
Baldwin, James Go Tell It On The Mountain
A novel that brings
contrasting the attitudes of two generations of an embattled family this novel portrays the story of human beings caught up in a dramatic struggle and of a society confronting inevitable change.
Bambara, Toni Cadi The Salt Eaters
Set in Claybourne, a town somewhere in the South, this is the story of a community of black people searching for the healing properties of salt, who witness an event that will change their lives forever. Some of them are centered, some are off-balance; some are frightened, and some are daring.
From the men who live off welfare women to the mud mothers who carry their children in their hides, the novel explores the narcissistic aspect of despair and the tremendous responsibility that comes with physical, spiritual and mental well-being.
Banerjie, Aniali Maya Running
The small golden statue of the Hindu Elephant God, Ganesh, hardly looks like an all-knowing Granter of Wishes. But Ganish is more powerful than he looks, and he is about to send a young girl on a magical adventure of self-discovery.
It is 1978, and Maya is the only
browned-skinned girl in her tiny
This is a tale of love and
anger, hope and tragedy. Chayo the
flower seller and her husband, Candeliario, the salad maker may finally be
blessed with the child they thought they would never have. But their cause for happiness triggers a
chain of events that marks the lives of everyone in the Mexican
Bernardo, Anilu Jumping off to Freedom
A dangerous journey into the
unknown is the only hope for the future of the Leal family. The stifling dictatorship in
Bode, Jane New Kids in Town
They are teen immigrants. Thousands of them enter
Brown, Roselten Civil Wars (HR)
The Carlls are the only white family still living in an “integrated” neighborhood in Jackson, Miss. They settled there in the mid-sixties, pioneers of the civil rights movement, filled with hope, idealism, and bravado. Now as they struggle with differ-ing perceptions of where they belong at this point in their lives, their family suddenly expands to include an orphaned nephew and niece, products of a bigoted household.
Bruchac, Joseph Code Talker: A Novel About the Navajo Marines of World War II
Bruchac assumes the persona of a Navajo grandfather telling his grandchildren about his World War II experiences. Ned attends an Anglo boarding school, where the Navajo language is forbidden. Children are beaten if they even “think” in Navajo. Then one day several are asked to join the Marines for a secret mission.
This is the story of the cyclical nature of life. It begins the story of an illiterate, poor, peasant farmer, Wang Lung, who ventures from the rural countryside and goes to town to the great house of Hwang to obtain a bride from those among the rank of slave. There, he is given the slave O-lan as his bride. She is selfless, hardworking and bears Wang Lung many sons. She supports his
love of the land and his desire
to acquire more land. She stays and
works with him through famine and very difficult times working right alongside
of him on the land. As a family, they
survive the difficulties of the pre-revolutionary
Carbone, Elisa Last Dance on
Raised by black parents on a
Carbone, Elisa Stealing Freedom
The moment Ann Maria Weems was born; her freedom was stolen from her. Like her family and the other slaves on the farm, Ann works from sun up to sundown and obeys the orders of her master. Then one day, Ann’s family—the only joy she knows—is gone. Just twelve years old, Ann is overcome by grief, struggling to get through each day. And her only hope of stealing back her freedom and finding her family lies in a difficult journey on the Underground Railroad.
Chang, Pang-Mei Natasha Bound Feet and Western Dress
Cisneros, Sandra Carmelo (HR)
Every year, Celaya “Lala” Reye’s family—aunts, uncles, mothers, fathers, and Lala’s six older brothers—packs up three cars and drives from Chicago to the Little Grandfather and awful grand mother’s house in Mexico City for the summer. Struggling to find a voice above the boom of her brothers and to understand her place on this side of the border, Lala is a shrewd observer of family life. She starts telling the Awful Grandmother’s life story. Soon a multi generational family narrative turns into a whirlwind exploration of storytelling, lies and life.
Clarke, Judith Kalpana’s Dream
Neema and her best friend, Kate,
are freshmen at Wentworth High. In
English Class they have to write an essay “Who Am I?”. At home, Neema’s great-grandmother, Kalpana,
has come for an extended visit all the way to
Cofer, Judith Ortiz AN
Rita is exiled to
Cofer, Judith The Line of the Sun
Set in the 1950s and 60s the novel moves from a rural Puerto Rican village to a tough immigrant housing project in New Jersey, telling the story of a Hispanic family’s struggle to become part of a new culture without giving up the old. At the center of the story is Guzman, who is an almost mythic figure whose adventures and exile, salvation and return leave him a broken man but preserve his place in the heart and imagination of his niece, who is his secret biographer.
Cofer, Judith The Meaning of Consuelo
Coming of age in the 1950’s when American influence threatens to dilute the island’s traditional Spanish customs, as well as to harm, perhaps irreparably, its fragile ecology, Consuelo watches her family being torn asunder—much like the island (Puerto Rico) itself. Her father believes the future lies in American technology, including the new autopista that will soon cut the island in two. But Consuelo has heard her abuelo say that once foreign noise drowns out the song of the coqui, the island’s emblematic tree frog, the voices of puertoriguenos themselves will be silenced.
Crew, Linda Children of the River
At first Hiram is excited to be
visiting his favorite grandfather in
Dai, Sije Balzac and the Little Chinese Seamstress
In this tale about the magic of reading and the romantic awakening, two hapless city boys are exiled to a remote mountain village for re-education during china’s infamous Cultural Revolution. There they meet the daughter of the local tailor and discover a hidden stash of Western classics in Chinese translation. As they flirt with the seamstress and secretly devour these banned works, they find transit from their grim surroundings to worlds they never imagined.
Danticat, Edwidge Breath, Eyes, Memory (HR)
At the age of 12, Sophie Caco is
sent from her impoverished
Deford, Frank Love and Infamy (HR)
An American novel, that tells
Doerr, Harriet Consider This, Senora (HR)
The characters in this novel find themselves waiting, hoping, and living in rural Mexico—a land with the power to enchant, repel, and change all who pass through it. Each of the North Americans who settle in Annapolas interacts with the landscape and the Mexican residents in a different way.
Doerr, Harriet Stones for Ibarra
Richard and Sara Everton, just
over and just under forty, have come to the small Mexican
The two Americans, the only foreigners in Ibarra, live among people who both respect and misunderstand them. And gradually the villagers—at first enigmas to the Evertons—come to teach them much about life and the relentless tide of fate. (Winner of the National Book Award)
Dorris, Micael A Yellow Raft in Blue Water (HR)
This is a fierce story of three generations of Indian women, beset by hardships and torn by angry secrets, yet somehow joined by the bonds of kinship. Starting in the present day and moving back in time, the novel is told in the voices of three women: fifteen-year old part black Rayona, searching for a way to find herself; her American Indian mother, Christine, consumed by tenderness and resentment toward those she loves; and the fierce and mysterious Ida, mother and grandmother, whose haunting secrets, betrayals, and dreams echo through the years, braiding together the strands of the shared past—and their future.
Tale of two very different men
each on a quest, both tied together by a history of remorse, jealousy, and a
love that crosses the barriers of race during the time of slavery. William, a fugitive slave from
Endrich, Louise Four Souls (HR)
Four Souls walks from her Ojibwe
reservation to the cities of
Endrich, Louise Love Machine (HR)
Tells the story of two families—the Kashpaws and the Lamartines. It is the story of multigenerational strong men and women who are caught in a drama of anger and desire. This novel accurately portrays what Native American life was really like.
Endrich, Louise Tracks: A Novel
Winter 1912 “We started dying before the snow, and like the snow, we continued to fall. It was surprising there were so many of us left to die. For those who survived the spotted sickness from the south, our long fight west to Nadouissioux land where we signed the treaty, and then a wind from the east, bringing exile in a storm of government papers, what descended from the north in 1912 seemed impossible.
By then, we thought disaster must surely have spent its force that disease must have claimed all of the Anishinabe that the earth could hold and bury. But the earth is limitless and so is luck and so were our people once.”
English, Karen Francie
Set sometime during the Truman
administration, this is a portrait of a 12 year old black girl in
Farmer, Nancy A Girl Named Disaster
Nhamo’s mother is dead and her
father is gone. When she learns that she
must marry a cruel man with three wives—before her twelfth birthday—she runs
away. Alone on the river, in a stolen
boat, Nhamo is swept into the uncharted heart of a great lake. There, she battles drowning, starvation, and
wild animals, and comes to know
“Nhamo was alone on this island. Now and forever, she would slowly grow old, without family or children, until she was too feeble to climb the tree. Her eyes would grow too dim to find water and her fingers too weak to dig for yams. She would starve like the baboon on the little island, unless a predator found her first.
‘No! I will build a boat and sail away!’ Nhamo cried stoutly. ‘I am Nhamo Jongwe, whose totem is the lion and whose people are descended from kings. I am a woman, not a little girl. I have Mother and Crocodile Guts for company, and—and—the njuzu.’
Fleischman, Paul Seedfolks
A small, vacant, rat infested lot looks like no place for a garden, especially to a neighborhood of strangers where no one seems to care. Until one day a young girl clears a small space and digs into the hard parched soil to plant her precious bean seeds. Suddenly the soil holds promise. Thirteen very different voices—old, young, Haitian, Hispanic all tell one amazing story about a garden that transforms a neighborhood.
Gaines, Ernest J. A Lesson Before Dying (HR)
Set in a small Cajun community
in the late 1940s. Jefferson, a young
black man, is an unwitting party to a liquor store shootout in which three men
are killed; the only survivor, he is convicted of murder and sentenced to
death. Grant Wiggins who left his
hometown for the university, has returned to the plantation school to teach. There while he struggles with the decision to
stay or not he visits
Galarza, Ernesto Barrio Boy HR
The story begins in Galarza’s
mountain village in
Garcia, Christina Aguro Sisters (HR)
Reina and Constancia Aguero are
Cuban sisters who have been estranged for 30 years. Reina—tall, darkly beautiful still lives in
her homeland. Once a devoted daughter of
“la revolucion.” she now basks in the glow of her many suitors. The pale and very petite Constancia lives in
Garcia, Chrstina Dreaming in Cuban
Celia del Pino, equipped with
binoculars and wearing her best housedress and drop pearl earrings, sits in her
wicker swing guarding the north coast of
Gilman, Charlotte P. The Yellow Wallpaper (HR)
First published in 1892 this is written as the secret journal of a woman who, failing to relish the joys of marriage and motherhood, is sentenced to a country rest cure to remedy her “nervous condition”—which is actually post partum depression. She longs to write but her husband and doctor forbid it prescribing instead complete rest. The story depicts her descent into insanity which gives testimony to the importance of freedom and self-empowerment for women.
Grove, Vicki The Starplace
In the early 1960’s Frannie has never given much thought to the color of her skin—until an African-American girl named Celeste moves to town. Celeste’s father breaks all of the town’s “unofficial rules.” He buys a house in the white part of town and sends Celeste to Frannie’s all-white school. At first Frannie ignores Celeste just like everyone else does.
But then the two girls are chosen to be in a special vocal-ensemble and they find themselves becoming friends.
Guterson, David Snow Falling on Cedars (HR)
In 1954 a local fisherman is found suspiciously drowned, and a Japanese American named Kabvo Miyamoto is charged with his murder. In the course of the ensuing trial, it becomes clear that what is at stake is more than one man’s guilt. There are memories of a love affair between a white boy and the Japanese girl who grew up to be Kabvo’s wife. Above all, San Piedro is haunted by the memory of what happened to its Japanese residents during World War II, when an entire community was sent into exile while its neighbors watched.
Hale, Janet Jailing of Cecelia Capture
Jailed for drunk driving on the
night of her 30th birthday, Cecelia Capture Wellis reflects on the
chain of circumstances and decisions that added up to her life. Once a high school dropout and an unwed
teenage mother, Cecelia has since put herself through college and is close to
graduating from law school. She is now
being held on an old welfare charge. She
reflects on her life from her childhood on the reservation in
Hamill, Pete Snow in August (HR)
In the year 1947, Michael Devlin, eleven years old and 100 percent American-Irish, is about to forge an extraordinary bond with a refugee of war named Rabbi Judah Hirsch. Michael finds himself in trouble when he witnesses the 17 year old leader of the dreaded Falcons gang beating an elderly shopkeeper. For Michael, 1940s Brooklyn is a world still shaped by life in the Old Country, a world where informing on a fellow Irishman is the worst crime imaginable—worse even than the violent crimes committed by some of those fellows. So Michael keeps silent, finding solace in the company of Rabbi Hirsch, a Czech refuge whom he meets by chance. From this serendipitous beginning blossoms a unique friendship—one that proves perilous to both when the Falcons catch up with them.
A hundred years ago, Dies Drear
and 2 slaves he was hiding in his house, an Underground Railroad Station in
Thomas thought the house, huge and isolated, was fascinating. But he wasn’t sure he was glad that his father had purchased the house—funny things, frightening things keep happening. The secret of the house is revealed in an exciting final sequence that maintains beautifully the mysterious and dramatic story of a black family caught in an atmosphere of fear and danger.
Hassler, Jon Jemmy
The older she gets, the less
seventeen-year –old Jemmy Stott feels she has to look forward to: with her Chippewa mother dead, her alcoholic
father becomes even more self-pitying than usual. The final blow is that he has ordered Jemmy
to quit school so that she can stay home and take care of her younger brother
and sister. But on her way home on her
last day of school, Jemmy is caught in a fierce snowstorm. She is rescued by Otis and Ann Chapman, a
couple who have moved to rural
Jemmy soon finds that the Chapmans have rescued her in more than one way…and that there’s a whole world outside of her family’s dreary existence, a world she can conquer if only she has the courage to fight.
Hernandez, Irene Beltran Across the
An adventure story. This is the story of the
Hersey, John A Single Pebble
I became an engineer. I found my way into hydraulics, and not many
years along, while still a youthful dam surveyor, I was chosen by the big
contracting firm for which I worked to go to China and study the river called
by the Chinese “the Great,” the Yangtze, to see whether it would make sense for
my company to try to sell the Chinese government a vast power project in the
river’s famous gorges. I spent a year
preparing myself for the trip…I took passage on a steamer to Shanghai, and
after an impatient month I was able to talk my way onto a British gunboat,
which was going upriver as far as Ichang.
The thousand miles from
Hidier, Taneya Desai Born Confused
Dimple Lala’s parents are busy making arrangements for her to meet a ‘suitable boy.”
This is a story about finding yourself, finding your friends, finding love, and finding your culture.
Hilton, James Lost Horizon (HR)
While attempting to escape a civil war, four people are kidnapped and transported to the Tibetan mountains. After their plane crashes, they are found by a mysterious Chinese man. He leads them to a monastery hidden in “the valley of the blue Moon”—a land of mystery and matchless beauty where life is lived in tranquil wonder, beyond the grasp of a doomed world. It is here, in Shangri-La, where destinies will be discovered and the meaning of paradise will be unveiled.
Ho, Mingfong The Stone Goddess
When the Khmer Rouge take over
the Cambodian capital of
Ever since his family moved to the tiny village of Los Arboles, Victor has been best friends with Rico. Victor Flores has been scratching out a living for his family by farming ever since his father died. When Rico tells him that he has enough money to pay for “a coyote” to help him cross into El Norte, Victor is unable to decide if he, too, should go along and look for work to feed his family with the pitiful annual corn harvest. He makes a painful decision to leave his mother and younger siblings and attempt to make the dangerous border crossing, jumping trains, fleeing thieves and border officials, and suffering from thirst and hunger.
Hogan, Linda Mean Spirit (HR)
Early in this century rivers of
oil were found on
“This has nothing to do with us, Katie.”
That is what Katie O’Farrell’s father believes. It’s 1863, and he says Irish men and boys shouldn’t have to fight in the Civil War. Slavery is not their problem. Why should he fight for the freedom of the slaves when their own countrymen are suffering from poverty and disease? But then Katie meets Jimmy and she realizes that friendships can transcend race and class. That blaming a group of people isn’t always the best solution.
Hosseini, Khaled Kite Runner (HR)
This is the unforgettable,
heartbreaking story of an unlikely friendship between a wealthy boy and the son
of his father’s servant. It is about the
power of reading, the price of betrayal, and the possibility of redemption and
it is also about the power of fathers over sons—their love, their sacrifices,
their lies. This is the first Afghan
novel to be written in English. It
covers the devastating history of
Houston, Julian New Boy
Fifteen year old Rob Garrett
wants nothing more than to escape the segregated South and prove himself. But in the late 1950’s
Islsa, Artevo The Rain God (HR)
This novel is set in a small town on the Texas-Mexican border tells the funny, sad and quietly outrageous saga of the children and grandchildren of Mama Chona—the matriarch of the Angel Clan who fled the bullets and blood of the 1911 revolution for a “gringo” land of promise.
Jen, Gish The Love Wife
The Wongs describe themselves as a “half half” family, but the actual fractions are more complicated, given Carnegie’s Chinese heritage, his wife Blondie’s WASP background, and the various ethnic permutations of their adopted and biological children. Into this family comes Lanlan. She is Carnegie’s Mainland Chinese relative; a tough, surprisingly lovely survivor of the Cultural Revolution who comes courtesy of Carnegie’s mother will—she is a gift.
Jen, Gish Typical American (HR)
Yifeng has come to
Jiminez, Francisco Breaking Through
Sequel to “The Circuit” (But can read without having read the first book).
At the age of fourteen,
Francisco Jimenez, together with his older brother, Roberto and his mother, is
caught by “la migra.” Forced to leave
In the months and years that follow, Francisco, his mother and father, and his sister and 4 brothers struggle to keep their family together at a time when they face crushing poverty, long hours of labor and outright blatant poverty.
Jiminez, Francisco The Circuit
The story follows a migrant family through their circuit from picking cotton and strawberries to topping carrots—and back again—over a number of years. As the family moves from one labor camp to the next it grows from four to ten. Poverty and no place to call home define their lives. But with faith, hope and back breaking work this “illegal” family survive.
Kadohata, Cynthia Kira-Kira
When Katie and her family move
from a Japanese community in
Lahiri, Jhumpa Interpreter of Maladies HR
Winner of 2000 Pulitzer Prize for Fiction
The story captures the lives of immigrants, expatriates and first-generation Americans.
Lahiri, Jhumpa The Namesake HR
The Ganguli family is a new
Kai Ting is the only
American-born son of an aristocratic Mandarin family that fled
Lee Wong, Joyce Seeing Emily
16 year old Emily Wu is a good daughter, good student, good artist, good cook and good friend. She works hard at school and in the Chinese restaurant she helps her parents run. But her life which once seemed sweet as the bao zi dumplings she and her mother make together, now feels stifling. Just as her paintings transform a canvas, Emily wants to create a new self. Then Nick a sexy transfer student asks her out. His kisses and the other girl’s envious glances give Emily a thrilling new vision of herself.
Lee, Mildred The People Therein
Lanthy Farr, lame since birth,
never thought a man would look at her twice—at least not a man who interested
her. So she was doubly surprised when
Drew Thorndike, a Bostonian, strange to the ways and beliefs of her people,
appeared on her Pa’s porch one night and let his gaze linger on her as she
huddled in the shadows by the door.
Set in the
Lester, Julius Day of Tears: A Novel in Dialogue
Levitin, Sonia Journey to
Papa was going away. It was the only wise thing to do people
said: the Jews were not safe in Hitler’s
Levitin, Sonia The Return
“I” am an Ethiopian Jew and
though we are proud Africans, the others in my country think we are outcasts.
But still we cling to our cherished beliefs—and to a
We are escaping our peaceful village,
unaware of the prejudice and cruelty around us.
Somehow we must make the long trek to the
MacGregor, Rob Hawkman
Will Lansa spent the summer with his father on the Hopi
Marshall, Paule The
The chosen place is Bourneville,
a remote, devastated part of a
Martin, Victor Parrot in the Oven: mi vida
Fourteen year old Manny Hernandez wants to be more than just a penny. He wants to be a “vato firme,” the kind of guy people respect. But that does not prove to be very easy when your father is abusive, your brother can’t hold a job, and your mother scrubs the house as if she can scrub the problems away. In Manny’s neighborhood, the way to get respect is to be in a gang. But M
anny’s not sure that joining a gang is the solution.
Mazer, Harry A Boy No More
After witnessing the U.S.S.
Arizona sink in
McCunn, Ruthanne Thousand Pieces of Gold: Biographical Novel
Lalu’s father calls his
thirteen-year old daughter his treasure, his “thousand pieces of gold,” yet
when famine strikes northern
Mikaelsen, Ben Touching Spirit Bear
Cole Matthews is a violent teen offender convicted of viciously beating a classmate and causing neurological and psychological problems. Cole elects to participate in Circle Justice, an alternative sentencing program based on traditional Native American practices that results in his being banished to a remote Alaskan island where he is left to survive for a year. Cynical and street smart, he expects to fake his way through the preliminaries, escape by swimming off the island, and beat the system, again. But his encounter with the Spirit Bear leaves him desperately wounded and gives him six months of hospitalization to reconsider his life.
Milkowitz, Gloria The War Between the Classes
What are Amy and Adam going to do about their love life? Neither Amy’s traditionalist Japanese parents nor Adam’s snobby; upper class mother will accept their relationship. to make things worse, Amy and Adam are involved in the “color game” at school, an experiment that is designed to make students aware of class and racial prejudices. The experiment threatens to alienate Amy from her friends and destroy her relationship with Adam.
Like other Japanese American
families in the
Momaday, N. Scott House Made of Dawn
About the struggle of a man who
cannot understand or be understood, a man who is integrated with neither the
traditions of his Indian heritage nor the ways of the white world. When Abel, a mixed-blood Indian who does not
even know the tribe of his own father, returns to the Walatowa Pueblo Reservation
after serving in World War II, he feels removed from the traditions of the
reservation. He drinks, kills an albino
Indian who has humiliated him, and is promptly sent to prison by a court that
has no understanding of his motives or his cultural identity. After his release from prison, Abel begins a
difficult emotional journey that takes him from an assembly line in
Mori, Kyoko Stone Field, True Arrow (HR)
Maya Ishida is no stranger to
sorrow. Torn from her artist father and
Namioka, Lensey April and the Dragon Lady
Every time she looked in the
mirror—she could see how different she looked from most of the girls in her
class. She has even heard that some
Chinese girls had their eyes altered surgically to make them appear more
Caucasian looking. Did Steve like me
just because I was Asian and he was attracted to the
Namioka, Linsey Mismatch
15 year old Sue Hua has just
moved from racially diverse
Namioka, Linsey An Ocean Apart, A World Away
Xueyan, known as Yanyan, has
seen quite a few “Foreign Big Noses.”
After all, the teachers at her school are missionaries from
Namioka, Linsey Ties That Bind, Ties That Break
Third sister in the Tao family,
Ailin has watched her two older sisters having their feet bound. In
Nazario, Sonia Enrique’s Journey
This is an account of a 17 year
old boys attempt to find his mother in
Nye, Naomi Shihab Habibi
The day after Lujana got her
first real kiss, her life changed forever.
Not because of “the kiss,” but because her father told the family that
they were moving from
O’Brien, Tim The Things They Carried (HR)
They carried malaria tablets,
love letters, 28 pound mine detectors, dope, illustrated Bibles, and each
other. And, if they made it home alive,
they carried unrelenting images of a nightmarish war. This novel has become an unparallel
O’Dell, Scott Thunder Rolling in the Mountains
It is the spring of 1877 when
fourteen year old Sound of Running Feet, daughter of Chief Joseph of the Nez
Perce, sees white people panning gold in the little creek that feeds the
Violet Paz has just turned 15, an important birthday in the eyes of her Cuban grandmother. Fifteen is the age when a girl enters womanhood, traditionally celebrating the occasion with a quinceanero. But while Violet maybe half Cuban she is also half Polish, but more importantly she feels 100% American. Except for some of her family’s “odd” doings, such as playing dominoes, smoking cigars, dancing to Latin music. Violet really knows little about Cuban culture. So when Violet finally accepts her “Abuela’s” plan for this “quinceanero”—cultures and feelings collide.
Otsuka, Julie When the Emperor Was Divine
On a sunny day in
Park, Linda Sue Project Mulberry
Julia Song and her friend
Patrick would love to win a blue ribbon, maybe even two, at the state
fair. They have always done projects
together, and they work well as a team.
This time, though, they are having trouble coming up with just the right
place. Julia’s mother suggests raising
silkworms like she did as a girl in
Parker, Linda Busby Seven Laurels
Story of a black man, Brewster
McAtee, who’s shifting personal fortunes, as a gifted
Patchet, Ann Bel Canto: A Novel (HR)
Peet, Mal Keeper
Star goalkeeper “El Gato” has
just won soccer’s converted World Cup.
In an interview with a sports journalist, he talks about growing up in
Placide, Jaira Fresh Girl
Mardi Desravines was born in
Platt, Randall B The Likes of Me
Cordelia Lu Hankins is half
Caucasian, half Chinese—and all albino.
She has grown up in a remote lumber town with her distant father and a
giant stepmother nicknamed Babe, convinced she is ugly. Then in the summer of 1918, when she is
fourteen she falls in love with the dashing Squirl. Cody is determined to go with Squirl when he
is fired from his job. So she runs
away. She winds up in the sideshows of
Querry, Ron Death of Bernadette Lefthand (HR)
Still today some people believe that witchcraft played a part in the brutal murder of Bernadette Lefthand. She was a beautiful young woman who lived on the Jicarella Apache reservation. Other people suspect Bernadette’s hard drinking husband, Anderson George, who has inexplicably disappeared. A vivid picture of what contemporary life is like for a Native American is painted by Ron Querry.
Rici, David Crazy Loco
Meet Loco, a dog with a passion
for firecrackers and Pedro, an alter boy forced to learn a hard lesson from two
of the toughest, oldest men ever to serve the Lord. Jordan and Todd are two boys from
Robinson, Margaret A Woman of Her Tribe
“You’re going to miss that bus. Hurry up! Run!”
Hurry up. It was not a Nootka idea, not a Nootka expression, not Nootka in any way at all.
But Annette ran, her knees pumping up the city street and sweat breaking out under her bangs…Her feet felt annoyed in their stiff new shoes. The knapsack of books banged her back as if they wanted her to open up and let them in. Up ahead, at the intersection, she saw the bus arrive.
Half English, half Nootka
Indian, Annette has been raised in her father’s Nootka village, but now her
mother believes it is time for an English-type education in
Saldana, Rene Finding Our Way
Whether set in a
Saldana, Rene The Jumping Tree
Rene Saldana, Jr. celebrates
barrio and family life with irresistible humor and honesty in lively stories
that follow Rey Castaneda from 6th through 8th grade in
When Eddy Okubo lies about his
age and joins the United States Army in
Tomi was born in
Portrays what life is like in a Los Angeles Chicano barrio, where everything in life is stacked against Chato Medina, his beleaguered family and his defiant and doomed friends.
Sheth, Kashmira Koyal dark, mango sweet
Jeeta’s family is caught up in the whirlwind of arranging marriages for her two older sisters, but the drama and excitement leave Jeeta cold. She dreads her turn on the matrimonial circuit, especially since Mummy is always complaining about how difficult it will be to find Jeeta a good husband, with her dark skin and sharp tongue. And when she falls in love with Sarina’s cousin Neel, Jeeta realizes that she must strike a balance between independence and duty, and follow her own path.
Sherman, Eileen Bluestone The Violin Player
Melissa’s life takes what seems
to be a tragic turn when her father accepts a teaching assignment in a small
Midwestern town, taking her far away from her home and friends in
Silko, Leslie Marmon Ceremony
Tayo, a young Native American, has been a prisoner of the Japanese during World War II, and the horrors he suffered during his captivity have almost destroyed him. His return to the Laguna Pueblo reservation only increases his feelings of estrangement and alienation. While other returning soldiers find refuge in alcohol and senseless violence, Tayo searches for something different. His search takes him back to the Indian past its traditions.
Son, Jon Finding My Hat
Jin-Han Park’s first memory is losing his hat to the wind on a blustery Chicago Street. Though he never gets the hat back, Jin-Han, like his family searches for their place in America, never stops looking for other “hats” to try on. The Park family travels from city to city searching for a better life and more money.
Soto, Gary After Life
You would think a knife in the ribs would be the end of things, but for Chuy, that is when his life finally gets interesting.
At last he sees that people love him, faces the consequences of his actions, finds in himself compassion and bravery…and even stumbles on what may be true love.
Soto, Gary Buried Onions
In this novel Soto paints an unforgettable portrait of barrio life as seen through the eyes of a young man desperately seeking a way out. At 19, all Eddie wants is to get by, hold down a job, and walk a straight line into the future. But trapped in a city sweltering in the grip of poverty, crime, and unfulfilled dreams, menaced by figures from the past Eddie finds his life spiraling slowly out of control.
This is a no-holds-barred tale of real life in the inner city.
Soto, Gary Jesse
Field work was something that Jesse and his brother Abel could do in order to get through college. With: an education they won’t ever have to rely on the fields again. But it is not easy for two young Mexican Americans to get ahead. Even though their dreams are reachable, there is always more to deal with than what they can actually see. There is always someone who doesn’t think they have what it takes to get out of the desolation and poverty. After all they are Mexican American.
Soto, Gary Pacific Crossing
When Lincoln Mendoza spends a summer with a host family in Japan for the summer he imagines he will spend all his time doing martial arts. But once he crosses the pacific, he finds baseball and jokes, families and farming, history and tradition. He discovers that it is hard to explain what it means to be both Mexican and American and that Mitsuo, his Japanese brother is the best kind of buddy a guy can have.
Soto, Gary Taking Sides
Lincoln Mendoza is brown, not white. Moving from the barrio to the tree lined streets of the suburbs will not change that. Tony Contreras is still his main man, and he is still loyal to his team at Franklin Junior High, even though he is playing basketball for Columbus now. But when Franklin and Columbus are scheduled to face each other in a league game, Lincoln worries how he can play his best with his white friends at his new school. He shows up all decked out in his Air Jordans to play against his old buddies.
Southgate, Martha The Fall of Rome
Latin instructor Jerome Washington is a man out of place. The lone African-American teacher at the Chelsea School, an elite all-boys boarding school in Connecticut, he has spent nearly two decades trying not to appear too ‘racial.” So he is unnerved when Rashid Bryson, a promising black Inner-city student who is new to the school, seeks Washington as a potential ally against Chelsea’s citadel of white privilege. Preferring not to align himself with Bryson, Washington rejects the boy’s friendship. Surprised and dismayed by Washington’s response, Bryson turns instead to Jana Hansen, a middle-aged white divorce who is also new to the school.
Staples, Suzanne Fisher Haveli
Shaban, daughter of the windswept Cholistan Desert, the youngest of Rahim’s four wives. Rahim adores her, but neither Shabanu nor her young daughter, Mumtaz, is safe from the cruelty of his jealous older wives. Shabanu flees to the Haveli, Rahim’s old family home in the city. But there she faces danger of another sort. She falls totally and unexpectedly in love with a man whose life is ruled by the very traditions that make their union impossible. Now she must thread her way between conflicting loyalties—to her husband, her family, and her own passion—to choose a new path for herself and her daughter.
Staples, Suzanne F. Shabanu: Daughter of the Wind
Shabanu, you are as wild as the wind. You must learn to obey. Otherwise…I am afraid for you,” Mama says, her face serious.
“In less than a year you will be betrothed. You aren’t a child anymore. You must learn to obey, even when you disagree: I am angry to think of Dadi or anyone else telling me what to do. I want to tell her I spend more time with the camels than Dadi, and sometimes when he asks me to do a thing, I know something else is better. But Mama’s dark eyes hold my face so intently that I know she really is afraid for me, and I say nothing.
Life is both sweet and cruel to strong-willed young Shabanu, whose home is the windswept Cholistan Desert of Pakistan. The second daughter in a family with no sons, she’s been allowed freedom forbidden to most Muslim girls. But when a tragic encounter with a wealthy and powerful landowner ruins the marriage plans of her older sister, Shabanu is called upon to sacrifice everything she has dreamed of. Should she do what is necessary to uphold her family’s honor—or listen to the stirrings of her own heart.
Straight, Susan Highwire Moon
Serafina is an illegal migrant worker living in California when the police catch her and send her back to Mexico—without her three-year old daughter. Twelve years later, with a pair of silver barrettes her only tangible memory of Elvia, Serafina begins a difficult and dangerous journey back across the border in an attempt to find her daughter. At the same time Elvia, now fifteen and pregnant resolves to track her mother down.
Stratton, Allan Chandra’s Secrets
Chanda, 16, remembers the good times when she lived with both parents on a cattle post in
Sub Saharan Africa. Her troubles started after her father was killed in the diamond mines. Her first stepfather abused her, the second died of a stroke and the third is a drunken philanderer. Although Chandra lives in a world in which illness and death have become common place—it is not one in which AIDS can be mentioned.
Then one night her latest stepfather’s sister dumps the dying man in front of their shantytown house. Before Chanda can get help from the hospital caseworker, he disappears and the wagon that brought him is burned.
Tan, Amy Bonesetter’s Daughter
Ruth who is a San Francisco career woman who makes her living by ghost writing self-help books has little real knowledge of her mother’s past. They really do not get along. The novel covers the difficult relationships of Chinese mothers and their American born daughters. Now suffering from Alzheimer’s Lu Ling’s references to the past are confusing and contradictory, particularly her desperate attempts to communicate with her deceased nursemaid. Ruth learns
that her mother was once a strong-willed, courageous girl who overcame a background of family secrets and lies, romantic heartbreak and suffering in war-torn China.
Tan, Amy Hundred Secret Senses
Olivia, the story’s narrator has a Chinese father and an American mother. After the death of her father Olivia meets her half sister, Kwan. Kwan adores “Libby-ah” and tries to introduce her to her Chinese heritage through stories and memories. Olivia, however, is embarrassed by Kwan, but she discovers that as she matures she has absorbed much about Chinese superstitions, spirits and reincarnation.
Tan, Amy Joy Luck Club
This is the story of four mothers, four daughters, four families whose histories shift with the wind—depending who is telling the story. In 1949, four Chinese women, recent immigrants to San Francisco, begin meeting to eat, play mahjong and talk. They call themselves the Joy Luck Club. Forty years later the stories are still continuing.
Tan, Amy Kitchen God’s Wife
Details of Chinese life and tradition are included. This is a story about the lives of a Chinese mother and her American-born daughter. “Winnie” reveals what her childhood was like in war-torn china in the 1940’s—especially her nightmarish arranged marriage. She survives her many problems largely due to the friendships of her female friends and the love of her second husband.
Triana, Gaby Cubanita
All Isa wants is to be a regular American teenager, something her Cuban immigrant mother most definitely does not understand. After almost eighteen years of constant debate over everything from birthday’s to boys, Isa has had enough. She is counting the days until she leaves for college—and can get as far away from Miami (also known as North Cuba) as possible. But the more she tries to cut her self off from her Cuban heritage the more tangled she becomes. Will she ever find the normal American life she dreams of?
Trigiani, Adriana Lucia, Lucia
It is 1950 in the New York City. Lucia Sartore is the beautiful 25 year old daughter of a prosperous Italian grocer in Greenwich Village. Lucia becomes an apprentice to an up-and –coming designer at the famous B. Altman department store on Fifth Avenue.
She is engaged to Dante DeMartino, her life-long sweetheart when she meets a handsome man who promises her a life of uptown luxury. Forced to choose between duty to her family and her dreams, Lucia finds herself in the midst of a scandal in which secrets are revealed, her career jeopardized, and the Sartoris’ honor is tested.
Uchida, Yoshiko Journey Home
World War II is raging. Yuki and her Japanese-American family are forced from their home in California and imprisoned in a U.S. concentration camp called Topaz.
After months of unbearable life in Topza, Yuki and her family are finally released. But they cannot go back to Berkeley. Yuki asks her father, “Papa, when can we go back?”
“I hope when the war is over, Yuki. When the United States and Japan stop fighting each
other. When the hate is gone. Then maybe…”
Papa rubbed his eyes and sighed. “Well, the Japanese are still excluded from the West Coast by
law, and there are some people in California who don’t want us ever to go back.” They would have us kept out of the state forever.”
They are free, but are left with nothing
With nowhere to go, and no money to get there, the road to rebuilding their lives seems endless. But in the end, it is their unyielding faith and courage that guide them home, reunited and hopeful.
Uchida, Yashiko Picture Bride
Carrying a photograph of the man she is to marry but has yet to meet, young Hana Omiya arrives in San Francisco California, in 1917, one of several hundred Japanese ‘picture brides” whose arranged marriages brought them to America in the early 1900s.
Her story is intertwined with others: her husband, Taro Takeda, an Oakland shopkeeper; Kiku and her husband Henny who rejected demeaning city work to become farmers; Dr. Kaneda, a respected community leader who is destroyed by the adopted land he loves.
All are caught up in the cruel turmoil of WWII, when West coast Japanese Americans are uprooted from their homes and sent to desert detention camps.
Volponi, Paul Black and White
Marcus and Eddie are the stars of Long Island, City High School’s Basketball Team. Marcus is black and Eddie is white but they got past all the racial stuff and have been best friends for years. Both boys are looking forward to great futures in college basketball and are waiting to see where they will receive scholarships to. Then one night, something goes wrong and they make a big mistake. They can’t go back and one must pay in an unfair urban criminal justice system.
Watkins, Yoko Kawaskima So Far From the Bamboo Grove
Stationed in North Korea during World War II, Yoko and her family lead a peaceful life—until the North Korean communist army begins to advance. Suddenly they must flee for their lives, running on foot at night, jamming into railroad cars, always in fear, always lacking food and shelter. And if they can make it to Japan, what can they hope to find in their war- ravaged homeland?
Wartski, Maureen Crane Along Way From Home
Was it truly the Promised Land? When word reached them in the crowded Vietnamese refugee camp that their friend Steve Olson would act as their sponsor so they could come to America, Kien and his adopted sister and brother, Mai and Loc, could scarcely believe their good fortune.
Mai and Loc immediately loved living with the Olson’s. But, for Kien, this new land seemed to hold nothing but trouble. He runs away to a new town where other Vietnamese had settled only to find himself caught in the middle of a battle between the local people and the new immigrants.
Wartski, Maureen Crane Boat to Nowhere
In their isolated village Mai and her family thought themselves safe from war. Then Kien a fourteen year old orphan stumbled into their lives, bringing tales of terrible conquerors taking over the forest villages. Soon the conquerors themselves arrived, bringing an end to peace and happiness. Then Kein had a desperate idea. He, Mai, her grandfather and little brother could still escape. They would take a village fishing boat and sail to another country! They would become boat people, risking the perils of pirates, storms, sickness, and starvation to find a land where they could be free…
Welch, James Fools Crow (HR)
The year is 1870. Located in the Two Medicine Territory of Northwestern Montana is a small band of Blackfeet Indians. Their life consists of a timeless round of activity deeply rooted in the land and the seasons and in a reverence for the customs handed down from the Long Ago People. butthe ever-increasing presence of the Napikwans—white men—threatens this existence.
Welch, James The Indian Lawyer (HR)
His shiny Saab and his finely tailored suits make Sylvester Yellow Calf’s childhood unimaginable. He was abandoned by his parents, raised in poverty on the Blackfoot reservation in Montana. Now a prominent lawyer, Sylvester moves between two worlds, feeling slightly out of place in each.
Welch, James Winter in the Blood (HR)
The narrator of this story is a sensitive, self-destructive young man living on the Blackfoot Reservation in Montana. He is haunted by memories—of an older brother, dead at the age of fourteen; of his father (who made white men laugh at the local bar) found frozen in a snowdrift; and of his once proud heritage.
He sleepwalks through his chores, consoles himself with women. The visions he sees and the echoes he hears are swallowed up in Montana’s vast emptiness. Yet he struggles against that emptiness, searching for something that will bind him to the lands of his ancestors.
Wong, Jade Snow Fifth Chinese Daughter
Jade Snow Wong grew up in a traditional Chinese family in San Francisco’s pre-World War II Chinatown. Wives were introduced by their husbands as “my inferior woman,” and rules were taught with corporal punishment, and home life was literally connected to the family business.
A highly intelligent child who consistently skips grades throughout public school (while attending Chinese school at night and taking over much of the family housework, Jade becomes determined to go to college and gain more independence than she has been taught to expect. Her decision sets off a balancing process between cultures that Jade explores.
Yep, Laurence Child of the Owl
Barney tells twelve year old Casey that he is going to hit it big and when that horse comes in, he tells her they will be in the pent house suite. Instead, Barney ends up in the hospital, and Casey goes to Chinatown to live with her grandmother, Paw-Paw. Casey feels lost in China town. She is not prepared for the Chinese school, the noisy crowds, missing her father. Her grandmother tells her about her mother that she never knew, her family’s owl charm, and her true Chinese name. At last, Chinatown—Paw-Paw’s home, her parents’ home—begins to be her home, too.
Yep, Laurence Dragon’s Gate
In 1867, Otter travels from Three Willows Village in California—the Land of the Golden Mountain. There he will join his father and uncle. Despite being with family, Otter is a stranger among the other Chinese in this new land. Otter’s dream is to learn all he can, take the technology back home and rid China of the Manchu invaders.
Yep, Laurence Mountain Light
Their families fought one another for generations, maintaining an age-old blood feud. But that changes when both Squeaky Lau and Cassia struggle against the tyrannical Manchu dynasty. Now he must prove his worth as a man to Cassia, his village and himself. He decides to travel to America where he must start all over.
Yep, Laurence The Traitor
Tells the story of two young tens who live in Rock springs, WY, in 1885 when animosity between American and Chinese miners reaches its peak. Born in the U.S. of Chinese parents, Joseph Young considers himself an American, but both communities see him as only Chinese. Michael Purdy is an “outsider” because of his illegitimate birth. The boys meet when Michael escapees hounding by bullies and hides in a cave outside of town where Joseph is fossil hunting. The book describes their growing friendship despite the escalating trouble between the Chinese and the “Westerners” who blame the newcomers for their economic hardships and march on Chinatown in a rampage.
Yezierska, Amzia Bread Gevei (HR)
Sara Smolinsky, the youngest daughter of an Orthodox rabbi, watches as her father marries off her sisters to men they do not love. “It says in the torah, only through a man has a woman an existence,” he proclaims. But Sara rejects this conception of Jewish womanhood. She wants to live for herself and to marry for love.
“My will is as strong as yours, “she replies.” Nobody can stop me. I’m not from the old country. I’m American!.”
Ahmedi, Farah Story
of My Life: An Afghan Girl on the Other
Side of the Sky
Farah Ahmedi is born into the world just as the war between the Miyahideen and the Soviets reaches its peak in Afghanistan. Bombs are falling all over her country, and her native Kabul is swelling with hundreds of thousands of people looking for homes and jobs. When Farah steps on a land mine on her way to school, her world becomes much smaller than the dreams and hopes in her heart.
Delman, Carmet Burnt Bread and Chutney (HR)
In the politics of skin color, Carmet Delman is an ambassador from a world of which few are aware. Her mother is a direct descendant of the Bene Israel, a tiny, ancient community of Jews thriving amid the rich cultural tableau of Western India. Her father is American, a Jewish man of Eastern European descent. Bound by love for each other and for that new born country, they hardly took notice of the interracial aspect of their union. But their daughter, Carmet, growing up in America, was well aware of her uncommon heritage.
Eire, Carlos Waiting for Snow in Havana: Confessions of a Cuban boy (HR)
“Have mercy on me, Lord, I am Cuban.” In 1962 Carlos Eire was one of 14,000 children airlifted out of Cuba—exiled from his family, his country, and his own childhood by the revolution. the Cuba of Carlos’s youth becomes an island of condemnation once a cigar-smoking guerrilla named Fidel Castro ousts President Batista on January 1, 1959. Suddenly the music in the streets turns to gunfire, Christmas is made illegal, political dissent leads to imprisonment, and too many of Carlos’s friends are leaving Cuba for a place as far away and unthinkable as the U.S. Carlos ends up there too, and fulfills his mother’s dreams by becoming a modern American man—even if his soul remains back in Cuba.
Wartsuki-Houston, Maureen Farwell to Manzanar (
Jeanne Wakatsuki was seven years old in 1942 when her family was uprooted from their home and sent to live at Manzanar internment camp—with ten thousand other Japanese Americans. Along with search light towers and armed guards, Manzanar ludicrously featured cheerleaders,
Boy Scouts, sock hops, baton twirling lessons, etc.
This is the true story of one Japanese American family’s attempt to survive the indignities of a forced detention.
Kingston, Maxine Hong Woman Warrior (
An account of growing up female and Chinese-American in California, in a Chinese laundry.
Mah, Adeline Yen Falling Leaves: The Memoir of an
Unwanted Chinese Daughter.
Born in 1937 in a port city a thousand miles north of Shanghai, Adeline Yen Mah was the youngest child of an affluent Chinese family who enjoyed rare privileges during a time of political and cultural upheaval. But wealth and position can not shield Adeline from a childhood of appalling emotional abuse at the hands of cruel and manipulative Eurasian stepmother. Adeline struggles for independence as she moves from Hong Kong to England and eventually to the United States.
Mah, Adeline Yen Chinese Cinderella and the Secret
Dragon Society (
Born into a family of wealth and privilege in 1940’s Shanghai, Chinese Cinderella (CC) is sheltered from the harsh brutalities of the Japanese invasion in China. But after enduring abuse at the hands of her cruel stepmother CC seeks refuge at a martial-arts school and joins a secret dragon society. She is introduced to the exciting world of espionage as part of Chinese Resistance movement. CC and her new comrades take on a daring mission to rescue a crew of American airmen.
Mar, M. Elaine Paper Daughter (
Story goes into the back rooms of a Chinese restaurant and the upper floors of an immigrant’s social club, places whose addresses say ‘Denver” but whose interiors speak of another country.
Her portrait of childhood inside a struggling enclave challenges the stereotype of Asian Americans as a “model Minority,” highlighting instead the barriers to success that exist in every American ghetto, from Chinatown to Harlem to Appalachia. In her journey from enduring racial harassment on the playground to graduating from Harvard, Mar tackles the larger issue of class and ethnicity.
Mathabane, Mark Kaffir Boy: The True Story of a Black Youth’s Coming of Age in
Apartheid South Africa. (
Mark Mathabane was weaned on devastating poverty and schooled in the cruel streets of South Africa’s most desperate ghetto, where bloody gang wars and midnight police raids were everyday occurrences. Yet armed only with the courage of his family and a hard won education he raised himself up from the squalor and humiliation of apartheid to win a scholarship to an American university.
Mori, Kyoko The Dream of Water: A Memoir (
“In an extraordinary memoir that is both a search for belonging and a search for understanding, Japanese-American author Kyoko Mori travels back to Kobe, Japan, the city of her birth, in an unspoken desire to come to terms with the memory of her mother’s suicide and the family she left behind thirteen years before.
Throughout her seven week trip,
Kyoko struggles with her ever-present past and the lasting guilt over her
mother’s death. Although she meets with
beloved cousins and other relatives, she agonizes over the frustrating
relationship she barely maintains wither fierce father and selfish
stepmother. Searching for answers, Kyoko
attempts to find a new understanding of what her father is really like, and how
it has affected her own place in two distinct worlds. As her time to leave draws near, Kyoko begins
to understand that her family connections may be a powerful cry of the heart,
but it is the new world that has given her escape from a lonely past and the
power to believe in herself (
Mori, Kyoko Polite Lies (305
Kyoko Mori delves into her dual heritage with a rare honesty. From her unhappy childhood in Japan, weighted down by a troubled family and a constricting culture, to the American Midwest, where she found herself free to speak as a strong-minded independent woman, though still an outsider, Mori explores the different codes of silence, deference, and expression that govern Japanese and American women’s lives.
Sone, Monica Nisei Daughter (
With humor and a true understanding, a Japanese-American woman tells how it was to grow up on Seattle’s waterfront in the 1930’s and be subjected to “relocation” during World War II. Along with some 120,000 other persons of Japanese ancestry—77,000 of whom were in actuality citizens of the U.S.—she and her family were forced out of their homes and imprisoned in a camp.
Wright, Richard Black Boy (
This is a classic narrative of Richard Wright’s journey from innocence to experience in the Jim Crow south. It is the story of one young man’s coming of age during a particular time and place. It is the “classic” text of what it means to be a man, black, and Southern in America
Nazario, Sonia Enrique’s Journey (305.23)
This is an account of a 17-year old boys attempt to find his mother in America. It explains the experience of illegal immigration from Central America.
Cofer, Judith Ortiz
The Latin Deli (810.8
Winner of the Anisfield-WolfBook Award. A collection of fiction, poetry and essays written by Judith Ortez. Cofer tells of the women’s lives which were intertwined with hers in EL Building in Paterson, NJ. They are a community transplanted from what they view as an island paradise. These Puerto Rican families yearn for the colors and tastes of their former home.
Maua, Mai Neng Bamboo Among the Oaks (HR) (810.9 BAM)
In stories, poems, essays and drama, these writers address the common challenges of immigrants adapting to a new homeland: preserving ethnic identity and traditions, assimilating to and battling with the dominant culture, negotiating generational conflicts exacerbated by the clash of cultures, and developing new identities in multiracial America.
Danticat, Edwidge The Butterfly’s Way (HR) (810.9 DAN)
In five sections—Childhood, Migration, Half/First Generation, Return and Future—the thirty-three contributors Write movingly, often hauntingly, or their lives in Haiti ad the United States.
Uchida, Yashiko Desert Exile: The Uprooting of a Japanese—American Family
The happy life of a Japanese-American family before they are sent to a concentration camp makes their nightmare experience after Dec 7, 1941, all the more inexplicable and horrifying. Her story is a very personal one. The story of her family is not necessarily typical of all Japanese immigrant families.
Hayslip, LeLy When Heaven and Earth Changed Places. (959.704 HAY)
The memoir of a girl on the verge of womanhood in a world turned upside down. The youngest of 6 children in a close-knit Buddhist family, LeLy Hayslip was 12 years old when U.S. helicopters landed in KyLa, her tiny village in central Vietnam. As the government and Viet- Cong troops fought in and around KyLa, both sides recruited children as spies and saboteurs. LeLy was one of those children. Before the age of 16, LeLy had suffered near-starvation, imprisonment, torture, rape and the deaths of many family members.
Deng, Benson They Poured Fire on Us From the Sky (962.404 DEN)
Five-year old Benjamin stood in the field, tending the goats, when the raiders arrived. Moments later, as gunshots, flames, and screams engulfed his village, Benjamin found himself running into the cover of the forest. In a nearby village, his cousins, seven-year old Alephonsion and Benson were driven from their homes as well. Every step led the boys away from their peaceful world into the horrific violence of Sudan’s civil war.