American Born Chinese

American Born Chinese is a phenomenal graphic novel and true pleasure to read. Yang weaves three deceptively different stories into a poignant tale. Through Jin, one can better understand the isolation of being the new kid at school, as well as a different ethnicity than the majority; the Monkey King fable allows one to discover China’s rich storytelling history; and Chin-Kee can show the stereotypes that many Chinese are still subject to.

American Born Chinese speaks to anyone who has the difficult task of reconciling opposite ends of their identity; celebrating their heritage while still fitting in with the whole. But I find the great cost many of us will attempt to accomplish normalcy speaks to a far wider audience, especially since American society still retains rigid views of what’s in and what’s out.

The art is simple and clean, elegantly contrasting with the complex themes hiding within; I finished the novel in two sittings but I enjoyed every page. Bottom line, American Born Chinese is worth the read. 4.5/5

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3 thoughts on “American Born Chinese

  1. Since you were kind enough to stop by my site, I’m more than happy to return the favor.

    Yeah, wasn’t Spirit great? I hadn’t read any Spirit before, and figured I owed it to myself to read something before the movie. Hmm… Can you guess which one I liked more? :D

    Since you’re a Cooke fan, have you checked out his new graphic novel, Parker? It was very good, especially if you like hardboiled noir. I wrote a quick something up about it:

    http://readrant.wordpress.com/2009/08/06/best-comic-trades-of-2009/

    To save you the trouble. :)

  2. Thanks! I agree, if only he had directed or helped write the movie, maybe it wouldn’t have been so bad. By the way, have you read Cooke’s Batman: Ego? It’s probably my favorite Bats story that makes him out to be psychotic :P

    I haven’t read Parker yet but it’s at the top of the list! Thanks for the link, I’ll definitely check out your review :)

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