Writer and Artist: Gene Luen Yang
American Born Chinese reminded me quite a lot of Approved for Adoption, a movie we saw at the Green Mountain Film Festival in March (review here, fourth movie down). The situations are different, of course. Jin's background is Chinese, born to immigrant parents in the US. Approved for Adoption's Jung was born in Korea, then adopted into a Belgian family. There are similar themes, nonetheless. Both Jin and Jung deliberately avoided friendships with other Asian kids, for instance. American Born Chinese is a much lighter tale than Approved for Adoption and probably more accessible to children as a result.
Yang's book is a powerful reminder that we still have a lot of work to do to achieve the pluralistic society we claim as an American ideal.