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Author Archive: Terry Hong

Terry Hong created and maintains Smithsonian BookDragon, a book blog for the Smithsonian Asian Pacific American Center. She was the writer wrangler for the film Girl Rising. She taught for Duke University’s Leadership in the Arts in NYC. She co-authored two books, Eastern Standard Time: A Guide to Asian Influence on American Culture from Astro Boy to Zen Buddhism and What Do I Read Next? Multicultural Literature. She reviews extensively for many publications. Follow her on Twitter at @SIBookDragon.

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The Refugee Experience for Children and Young Adults

The Refugee Experience for Children and Young Adults

Editor’s note: Families are being separated at the border. Children are being held in concrete cages. Young readers who find themselves in better circumstances can learn about the refugee experience through this broad compendium of books, originally published as a two-part list in August of 2017.  The Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for […]

Posted in: Books and Authors
Talking Mormon Murder Mysteries with Mette Ivie Harrison

Talking Mormon Murder Mysteries with Mette Ivie Harrison

Trust me: Linda Wallheim is a sleuth like no other. She’s a devout Mormon, for starters, and the wife of a respected Utah ward bishop. And yet her sense of justice gets her into plenty of trouble, especially in a community so dominated by men-centric rules. She slaps an aging bully who calls his 5-year-old […]

Graphic Gems: Novels, Biographies, and Memoirs for Younger Readers

Graphic Gems: Novels, Biographies, and Memoirs for Younger Readers

Since I recently shared some utterly satisfying single-volume graphic titles for adults, I figured I should point out a few outstanding titles for middle-grade and YA readers, as well. That said, so-called grown-ups will surely find many of these titles just as satisfying. Equal literary opportunities for all! Be Prepared, by Vera Brosgol Caldecott Honor […]

Graphic Gems: Novels, Story Collections, and Memoirs for Adults

Graphic Gems: Novels, Story Collections, and Memoirs for Adults

While I’m addicted to various manga series (click here and here for some of my favorites), I’ve also discovered the satisfaction of single-volume graphic titles offering that perfect balance of fascinating narrative and gorgeously complementary, enhancing art. From goofy to haunting, comforting to challenging, and so much more, don’t miss these recent(-ish) standouts. Boundless, by […]

A 21st-Century Filipino-American Fiction Reader
By March 30, 2018 0 Comments Read More →

A 21st-Century Filipino-American Fiction Reader

Originally published in 1943, Carlos Bulosan’s America Is in the Heart is a cornerstone of classic Asian-American literature. Drawing on Bulosan’s Filipino boyhood, his immigration to the U.S., and the challenges he faced as a first-generation Asian American, it remains a notable inspiration, most recently highlighted in the Smithsonian Asian Pacific American Center’s immigration-friendly video of the […]

A Poet’s Novel: Jon Pineda talks LET’S NO ONE GET HURT
By March 22, 2018 0 Comments Read More →

A Poet’s Novel: Jon Pineda talks LET’S NO ONE GET HURT

Even a poetry dullard like me recognizes poet / memoirist / novelist Jon Pineda’s ability to do something spectacular with language. His lean sentences are surprisingly dense, as if to defy their brevity. Surely publishing three award-winning books of poetry helped Pineda hone the exactness of prose—first in his memoir, Sleep in Me (2010), which […]

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“I can’t think of a happier story”: Shobha Rao talks GIRLS BURN BRIGHTER

“I can’t think of a happier story”: Shobha Rao talks GIRLS BURN BRIGHTER

After 15 years of writing and 15 years being rejected, Shobha Rao made her fiction debut two years ago with An Unrestored Woman, a collection of a dozen impeccable stories—savage and empathetic, brutal and lyrical, mournful and celebratory. Presented as six interlinked pairs, those stories reverberated beyond borders, cultures, countries, and generations. Rao’s new novel, […]

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A Transracial Adoption Reader
By January 9, 2018 0 Comments Read More →

A Transracial Adoption Reader

Now-adult adoptees who arrived in the United States from other countries are learning that their U.S. citizenship can’t be assumed. Two recent tragedies have highlighted the shocking realization: the May 2017 suicide of Phillip Clay, adopted at eight by a Philadelphia family and deported to Seoul 29 years later, and the November 2016 deportation of Adam […]

Favorite Adult Books, 2017
By December 6, 2017 0 Comments Read More →

Favorite Adult Books, 2017

What sweet agony to have so many fantabulous, freakin’ spectacular books from which to cull. I’ve got my 2017 favorite adult titles down to a baker’s dozen, chosen under great duress. They’re presented in alphabetical order—as opposed to actually ranked, a feat which just might send me over the edge. Titles are linked to Booklist reviews, […]

10 Diverse Debut Story Collections
By November 15, 2017 0 Comments Read More →

10 Diverse Debut Story Collections

Short-story collection The Interpreter of Maladies, Jhumpa Lahiri’s first published book, won the Pulitzer Prize. Phil Klay’s debut collection, Redeployment, got him the National Book Award. Even Tom Hanks got in on the short story game with his debut book, Uncommon Type, out last month.  Right now, eyes are on NBA finalist Carmen Maria Machado […]