Asian Americans Who Shaped the Country
A TRUE TALE WITH
A CHERRY ON TOP
Dial Books/ Penguin Random House
(pub.5.3.2022) 40 pages
Author: Kelly Yang
Characters: Multiple Asian Americans
" From creating beautiful music like Yo-Yo Ma to flying to outer space like Franklin Chang-Díaz; from standing up to injustice like Fred Korematsu to becoming the first Asian American, Black and female vice president of the United States like Kamala Harris, this book illuminates the power of Asian Americans all over the country, in all sorts of fields. Each spread is illustrated by a different renowned Asian American or Asian artist. "
" A long time ago, our ancestors came to this land to build a better life.
To build a better future.
[spread illustrated by Sally Deng]
They were told to get out.
They were told they couldn't stay.
You know what they said to that?
They said, we belong here, and we will thrive!
'Yes, we will!'
[spread illustrated by Dow Phumiruk]
...For we can be ANYTHING.
All we have to do is dream it."
[spread illustrated by Marcos Chin]
And something more: The Author's Note by Kelly Yang expands on each spread. The one illustrated by Dow Phumiruk explains, in part, that "early Asian American immigrants faced many discriminatory laws, including the CHINESE EXCLUSION ACT, which banned Chinese laborers, both skilled and unskilled, from entering the country. It made Chinese immigrants ineligible for citizenship and naturalization, giving them the legal status of permanent aliens. The Act was passed in response to years of anti-immigrant hostility and violence on the part of Americans who feared the new immigrants would take their jobs... If Chinese immigrants were not allowed to be citizens, they could not challenge discriminatory laws like this."