American Born Chinese is a book I have just read and I liked it a lot.
The book tells three parallel stories. One about a Chinese immigrant in America, another about an American boy who is visited on holiday by his cousin. The two stories are supplemented by recreating the legend of the Monkey King.
In a story, the character Jin Wang, who came from China to live in the United States, is experiencing a period of adaptation to the new reality, as the countries are of the two very different cultures. He lives in isolation and is subjected to ignorance, even being rejected by her schoolmates, notably by Peter Garbinsky due to attitudes of prejudice against the culture of the country from which immigrated.
After some time, a teenager, falls in love with Amelia Harris. To get her to feel something for him, he changes his behavior and his appearance by adjusting the haircut.
Wei-Chen helps her do her homework. Later Jin manages to convince her to go out together, to the movies, but nothing happens at the meeting.
After some adventures, one night going to sleep, he asks to become an American type. The next morning, the desire was fulfilled, getting the new name of Danny.
In another story from the book, the American student receives a visit from cousin Chin-Kee, who represents the worst of stereotypes of Chinese people. Every year, the visit of Chin-Kee cause embarrassment to Danny.
And to tie these two narratives, the author reinvents an ancient Chinese legend: in the hands of Gene Luen Yang, the traditional story of the Monkey King who, when rejected by the gods, decides to renege nature itself and become a man.
The story begins when the Monkey King was rejected on the feast of the gods, so he beat them all and then returned enraged to his home in the "Mountain of Flowers and Fruits". The next day, he made a law that all monkeys had to wear shoes and he was on his own training to have all four major disciplines of invulnerability and the four major disciplines of physical form. When he left, he was convicted of invading the sky and was sentenced to the death penalty, but as he had already achieved major powers of Kung Fu, he changed his name to The Great Sage. He went to everyone who sentenced him to beat them, so they called Tze-Yo-Tzuh to contain the monkey king. The king was challenging him, but always lost until Tze imprison the king of low stones.
Wong-Lai-Tsao was a monk who was chosen to go to the king, with three disciples. Upon arriving to the king they were arguing because the king could not leave the lot, then came two demons and seriously injured a monk.
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