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Book Banter & Recommendations > YA API bookshelf recommendations for New Teacher

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message 1: by Nicholas (new)

Nicholas Leung | 1 comments Hey everyone,

Name is Nick and I use he/him pronouns. nice to meet you all! I and my s/o are new middle school teachers in San Francisco, teaching a large community of Asian-Pacific Islander students.

As both Chinese and Pacific Islander I would love to be able to provide more exposure to my students (and fellow teachers) to texts written by contemporary API authors. Any recs?

Not your Sidekick and Heroine Complex have been amazing to discover through B&B. American Born Chinese is a personal favorite. Any others?

message 2: by jas (new)

jas (silkquake) | 5 comments Hi Nick! Most of what I read are YA books by AsAm authors and I am happy to recommend some. Just a note though, Heroine Complex, while great, is NOT YA, and definitely not for middle-grade students. Also, not all YA is appropriate for middle-grade students. I've noted it where I think it's not, but I don't have a perfect memory!

- To All the Boys I've Loved Before by Jenny Han. This is a super fun book and I highly recommend the series and it has the added bonus of the movie coming out next month! This is more a book for high school students than middle grade though.
- Aru Shah and the End of Time by Roshani Chokshi. This was published under Rick Riordan's imprint and feels a lot like his books, which are very much loved by middle-grade students. It's funny and fast-paced and I enjoyed it a lot!
- An Ember in the Ashes by Sabaa Tahir. Very dark but very good at depicting power dynamics of oppression and doesn't fall into a lot of bad tropes that a lot of fantasy series do when trying to do 'fantasy oppression'. I would not give this to middle-grade students but it's a good read for high school students.
- When Dimple Met Rishi by Sandhya Menon. A sweet and fun summer romance! I haven't read her other book yet, but look into that too!
- Any book by Marie Lu. One of the most prolific AsAm authors in YA and her books are pretty good! I can't remember how appropriate they are for middle-grade students but I think I remember seeing middle-grade students reading them anyway.
- Any book by Malinda Lo. One of my FAVOURITE authors. All her books are about queer girls and she writes in a wide range of genres (so far: fantasy, sci-fi & mystery/thriller). These books mean a lot to me and were some of the first times I saw myself in the genres I loved. Highly recommended.
- The Agency series by Y.S. Lee. Mystery novels set in Victorian England about a white-passing Chinese girl who works at a detective agency run entirely by women. A lot of fun.
- The Bone Witch by Rin Chupeco. I'm currently reading the sequel but I've heard it's even better than the first book which I'm glad because the first book was very good. Really fun and elaborate world-building and an aesthetic that would've made me soooo happy when I was in middle-school.

There are a lot of other books and authors that I haven't mentioned, but I didn't want to overwhelm anyone (although this might be a little overwhelming already, sorry!). I hope this is helpful and good luck!

message 3: by Jill (last edited Aug 05, 2018 08:43PM) (new)

Jill (meetcutebooks) | 5 comments To add to that, I just recently read Front Desk by Kelly Yang and I would absolutely recommend it! It has a lot of great lessons to learn and can be an eye-opener about tough topics for many kids today.

message 4: by Mariko (new)

Mariko Tatsumoto | 5 comments Nick, I know this sounds self promotional, but I write YA and Middle Grade novels that are set in Japan or have Japanese characters. If you're looking only for API characters, then my books may not work. My books have garnered 6 awards and have universal themes as well as being fun and entertaining. You can look them up here at Goodreads under Mariko Tatsumoto.
I also just read Go by Kazuki Kaneshiro, translated from Japanese. It's a coming of age story. I thought it was very good.

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