This month is Asian Pacific American Heritage Month. If you haven’t already, why not grab one of these books to curl up with over the long weekend ahead?
The Wangs vs. the World by Jade Chang
In his youth, Charles Wang moved to America and made a fortune. But he loses it all in the financial crisis and decides the only solution is to return to China with his American-born children and regain the family’s ancestral lands.
The Sympathizer by Viet Thanh Nguyen
A half-French, half-Vietnamese Army captain moves to Los Angeles after the Fall of Saigon, where he works as a communist double agent and builds a community with other Vietnamese refugees in this Pulitzer-winning novel.
Interpreter of Maladies by Jhumpa Lahiri
This Pulitzer-winning collection of short stories straddles India and the United States with characters who confront situations universal to the human experience.
China Men by Maxine Hong Kingston
Chronicling the lives of three generations of Chinese men in America, this National Book Award winner combines memory, myth, and fact as it addresses men’s journeys. This book is in many ways a companion to The Woman Warrior: Memoirs of A Girlhood Among Ghosts, which chronicles the author’s experience growing up as a Chinese-American.
This memoir follows three generations of Tibetan women, beginning with Kunsang, a Buddhist nun who flees the invading Red Army with her young daughter.
Ai, who self-identifies as Japanese, Choctaw-Chickasaw, Black, Irish, Southern Cheyenne, and Comanche, won the National Book Award for this collection of her poetry. The poems this volume contains question race, gender, identity, and grief, as well as American cultural phenomena.
3 Sections by Vijay Seshadri
This Pulitzer-winning collection of poetry discussion confrontations and divisions in contemporary life.
Inside Out & Back Again by Thanhha Lai
In this National Book Award winner, when Há and her family flee Vietnam for America during the Vietnam War, she learns to lean on her family as she adapts to her new life in Alabama.
Juniors by Kaui Hart Hemmings
Lea has always felt separate: she’s part Hawaiian and part Mainlainder, she’s constantly the new girl, and her mother is a famous actress. In yet another new place, she finally begins to become herself.
Project Mulberry by Linda Sue Park
When Julia and her friend Patrick decide to win a ribbon at the state fair, Julia’s mother suggests they raise silkworms like she did as a child in Korea.
These books represent a variety of experiences and viewpoints, each which has something relevant not just for Asian Pacific American Heritage Month but also for our society in general. Find out what one of them says to you!