We had plans to celebrate the 4th with my mom, but had to cancel because we had to have some electrical issues in our house sorted out. (My landlords spent hours trying to figure it out, but in the end, they’re going to call an electrician who’s supposed to come today.).
Rather than focusing on what I missed out on–seeing my mom and sister, eating my weight in Filipino BBQ, and seeing fireworks–I decided that I was going to focus on what it’s front of me–my family and our home (even though only parts of it are getting electricity). We watched the Macy’s Fireworks show on TV and ate popcorn. It was actually a really fantastic way to end our evening–especially since my kids hate how loud fireworks are.
Which also made me think about how grateful I am that YA books are starting to represent diverse authors. I’m American, but I’m also Filipino/WoC. Two years ago when I started writing my book, I was worried that no one would want to read it, but I kept writing because I wanted my daughter to have this book. Now that I’m almost done with my draft, I’m so grateful to the authors who went before me who shared their story because it gives me hope that others will want to read it too.
Which books/authors inspire you? If you’ve read any of these, what did you think?
I hope you all had a great holiday! I hope you also have a fabulous Wednesday!
Wooden burned bookmark Shh…I’m reading made by the lovely Mary @markedbymary. Please check out her profile on Instagram for her Go Fund Me page that explains her current health situation.
Diversity in literature is important to me. As a reader, I want to read about characters I can identify with. I also want to be able to see myself in the stories. When you’re brown (like me) those instances don’t happen that often, but within the last few years, it’s becoming easier to find those stories, but there’s always room for more!
Here are some titles that I’ve read that I’ve enjoyed. The characters are strong and the stories are fantastic. A particular troupe that will always grab my attention are mixed-race characters. My children are mixed race and I’m always looking for stories that they can find themselves in. The main character Madison in Everything, Everything is a thoughtful, brave young girl who happens to also be half black and half Chinese. The main character Kate Thompson in Vengeance Road who is smart and determined to avenge her father also happens to be half white and half Cherokee. In the short story Madeleine’s Choice from A Tyranny of Petticoats, Madeleine is sweet and loyal to her family and also happens to be from the gens de couleur libres—the free people of color class in 19th century New Orleans.
Another troupe that I enjoy are fairy tale retellings. It’s one of my favorite genres. Uprooted is a fantastic retelling of the Dragon and the Wood which happens to be inspired by a Polish folktale. Serpentine is about Sky Bright, a young girl who is devoted to serving her mistress, but also learns that she has demonic origins which happens to be inspired by the Chinese mythological demon snake creature who seduced men and then killed them afterward. Cinder takes place in New Beijing—a reimagined world inspired by China. The Star-Touched Queen is inspired by Indian folkore and myths.
Characters who are marginalized in some way is a theme I’d like to explore more. Cinder is a fantastic fairytale retelling about a girl who’s treated differently because she’s part cyborg. Dumplin’ is about Willow Dean who is overweight, but is happy and confident in herself until she starts a relationship with a boy. She begins to doubt whether or not he’s really interested in her or interested in her just at work.
If you get a chance, I highly recommend reading these titles! If you have, what did you think? What other stories do you enjoy?
#julywithcj “Diverse Books” • #sammyreadsjuly16 “one word title” and “cover love”