Shades of America


Absolutely True Diary of a Part-time Indian by Sherman Alexie. Budding cartoonist Junior leaves his troubled school on the Spokane Indian Reservation to attend an all-white farm town school where the only other Indian is the school mascot.

The counterfeit family tree of Vee Crawford-Wong by L.Tam Holland. Vee's history assignment is to create a family tree, but he doesn't know anything about his family beyond his parents' generation.

The Latte Rebellion by Sarah Jamila Stevenson. Asha Jamison and her best friend Carey, inspired by a racial insult, set off on a money-making trip, selling t-shirts to raise awareness for mixed-race students.

Flowers in the sky by Lynn Joseph. Fifteen-year-old Nina immigrates from the Dominican Republic to New York to live with her older brother and must reconcile the realities of Washington Heights with her dreams of the U.S.

Summer of the Mariposas by Guadalupe Garcia McCall. Fifteen-year-old Odilia and her four younger sisters embark on a journey to return a dead man to his family in Mexico, aided by La Llorona, but impeded by a witch, a warlock, and chupacabras.

Good enough by Paula Yoo. A Korean American teenager tries to please her parents by getting into an Ivy League college, but a new guy in school and her love of the violin tempt her in new directions.

Hush by Eishes Chayil. Gittel is determined to raise awareness of sexual abuse in her Borough Park, New York, community, despite the rules of Chassidim that require her to be silent.

Bitter melon by Cara Chow. Frances, a Chinese-American student in a school in San Francisco, questions her mother's desire that she become a doctor when she enrolls in a speech class and discovers a hidden talent.

Mexican whiteboy by Matt de la Peña. Danny searches for his identity while spending a summer with his cousin and friends on the baseball fields and back alleys of San Diego County, California.

Black boy/white school by Brian F. Walker.  "Ant" Jones from the ghetto of East Cleveland, Ohio, gets a scholarship to a prep school and finds that he must change his image for a world that never fully accepts him.

Born confused by Tanuja Desai Hidier. As Dimple Lala turns seventeen, she realizes that life is complex as her friend starts pulling away and her parents try to find a suitable boyfriend for her, despite the fact that she is not interested.

Touching Spirit Bear by Ben Mikaelsen. Fifteen year-old Cole, in order to avoid going to prison, agrees to participate in a sentencing alternative and is sent to a remote Island where an encounter with a Spirit Bear changes his life.

The Skin I’m in by Sharon G. Flake. Thirteen-year-old Maleeka, uncomfortable because her skin is extremely dark, meets a new teacher with a birthmark on her face and makes some discoveries about how to love herself.

Mismatch by Lensey Namioka. Two families clash when a Japanese-American teenaged boy starts dating a Chinese-American teenaged girl.

1001 cranes by Naomi Hirahara. With her parents on the verge of separating, a devastated Japanese American girl spends the summer in Los Angeles with her grandparents, and learns how complicated relationships can be.

Face relations : 11 stories about seeing beyond color edited by Marilyn Singer. A collection of eleven contempory short stories examining possibilities beyond bias and prejudice.

First crossing : stories about teen immigrants edited by Donald R. Gallo. Stories of recent immigrants from around the world reveal what it is like to face prejudice, language barriers, and homesickness.

Updated: March 2014

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Open mic : riffs on life between cultures in ten voices edited by Mitali Perkins. Shares stories about growing up in diverse homes or communities.

Looks like daylight : voices of indigenous kids by Deborah Ellis. For two years, Ellis traveled across the United States and Canada interviewing Native children. The result is a collection of interviews with children aged nine to eighteen.

The griots of Oakland: voices from the African American Oral History Project compiled and edited by Angela Zusman. A project of the Center for Healthy Schools and Communities and the Oakland Unified School District's Office of African American Achievement and Story for All.

They call me a hero : a memoir of my youth by Daniel Hernandez and Susan Goldman Rubin. A student intern credited with saving the life of Gabrielle Giffords during the Tucson shooting shares his story and explores the character qualities that have helped him rise above adversity.

Growing up Muslim: Understanding the beliefs and Practices of Islam by Sumbul Ali Karamali. Addresses Muslim beliefs, practices and demographics.

The black girl next door : a memoir by Jennifer Baszile. A powerful, beautifully written memoir about coming of age as a black girl in an exclusive white suburb in "integrated," post-Civil Rights California in the 1970s and 1980s.

Growing up Filipino: stories for young adults collected and edited by Cecilia Manguerra Brainard. Stories of Filipino teens growing up on the islands and in the U. S. that explores themes of family, angst, friendship, love and home.

Growing up Filipino II: more stories for young adults collected and edited by Cecilia Manguerra Brainard. Stories of Filipino teens growing up on the islands and in the U. S. that explores themes of family, angst, friendship, love and home.

Yell-oh girls!: emerging voices explore culture, identity, and growing up Asian American edited by Victoria Nam. Addresses a variety of issues Asian American girls face in today's modern culture.

Updated: March 2014

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