American Born skillfully weaves the stories of Jin Wang who desperately wants to fit in with his peers at school and and the mythological story of the Monkey King. When his family moves from San Francisco’s Chinatown to an exclusively white suburb Jin finds ridicule and social isolation in the casual racism of teenagers. Danny is a popular blond, blue-eyed high school jock. His social status is jeopardized when his goofy, embarrassing Chinese cousin, Chin-Kee, enrolls at his high school. Chin-Kee is a combination of all Chinese stereotypes. Quite hilarious though painful. The Monkey King is unsatisfied with his current sovereign and desperately longs to be elevated to the status of a god but because of “racism” is not allowed to join the ranks of the gods.
This book was ordered for my son’s book club and I quite enjoyed it.