The U.S. celebrates Asian-Pacific American Heritage Month (APAHM) in May. In honor of this celebration, I collected books with APAHM-related themes as well as authors of Asian-Pacific heritage. Check out my 2014 shelfie. What books deserve a spot on the shelf?
You can click on the covers, visit Jorie’s Store on Amazon, and shop for some great reading. Making purchases at Jorie’s Store funds future giveaways! 🙂
Sequoyah with a tablet depicting his writing system for the Cherokee language. 19th-century print of a painting. | Wikipedia
I must confess: I’ve not read much Native American literature. I read a couple of books by the talented Sherman Alexie in 2013 but I’ve resolved to broaden my horizons. I happily discovered Open Education Database (OEDb)’s list – 20 Native American Authors You Need to Read. By this time next year, I hope to say I’ve read a few more pieces of Native American literature.
So, now I present a few books in honor of Native American Heritage Month. To visit the store, please click on any of these book covers. Making purchases at Jorie’s Store funds future giveaways! 🙂
Reasons for Reading: After reading Ruta Sepetys’ Between Shades of Gray (not to be confused with the infamous E.L. James trilogy), I wanted to read Sepetys’ sophomore effort. Additionally, the setting of New Orleans appealed to me. I placed a request on it and excitedly received the book in 2014.
Summary: In 1950, seventeen year old Josie Moraine barely makes ends meet working in the French Quarter. Her erratic, somewhat estranged mother works as a prostitute. Josie longs to make her way out of New Orleans and to the Ivy Leagues. Around New Year’s Day, a wealthy man from Tennessee turns up dead. When the crime seems to lead to Josie’s mother and her shady boyfriend, Josie finds herself embroiled.
One Thing I Learned from this book: I hadn’t realized Tulane had a sister college – Newcomb.
What I Liked: The fantastic setting of New Orleans appealed to me again. Sepetys’ also diverged greatly from that of Between Shades of Gray. Nonetheless, the characters and situations described still made me want to know what would happen to them as they did in Sepetys’ first novel.
What I Disliked: I wasn’t happy with Josie’s mother being a sociopath sort of whore. Also, I thought there were too many evildoers in this book.
Rainbow Rating: Orange – Restricted from those under age 17
Frederick Douglass was the quintessential voice of his day. Born in the slave state of Maryland, Douglass seized opportunities to learn. He became literate and escaped slavery. Douglass wrote of his experiences , offering a first person account of the atrocities he withstood.
In his work Narrative of the Life of Frederick Douglass, an American Slave, I was moved by his differentiation between “the Christianity of Christ” and “the Christianity of this land.” Douglass opened doors for many with his writings.
Back in my college days, my mom recommended I read Michele Andrea Bowen’s Church Folk. I heeded her recommendation and finished the book during spring break. Church Folk offered a realistic Christian romance between two African Americans set against the backdrop of the Civil Rights movement. Bowen’s book raised the bar for Christian Fiction in my opinion. I revisited and reviewed it in one of my library school classes. Check out my 2007 review of it by clicking on Well, isn’t that special? The story of Church Folk by Michele Andrea Bowen.
Bowen has gone on to write more stories, including a sequel to Church Folk. I recommend her writing to anyone seeking historical fiction and/or no-nonsense Christian fiction.