The Bird’s Word with Robin: Gene Luen Yang Manga Roundup

Presenting The Birds Word with Robin: A roundup featuring books by Gene Luen Yang. Reviewed by Robin Wasilewski for In the Stacks. 

This is a review of three graphic novels by Gene Luen Yang: American Born Chinese, Boxers, and Saints

American born Chinese flips between three different storylines. The first story focuses on the Monkey King, the second is about a young boy named Gene who has just started at a new school where he is the only Chinese American student, and the third is a collection of negative stereotypes represented as a real character.

The second graphic novel, Boxers is the parallel story of Saints which is the third graphic novel in this review.

In the story boxers, the main character is Little Bao (Bao), who has been watching as foreign mercenaries and soldiers are harassing his people and degrading his culture across the countryside. When he has enough, he decides to fight back using the ancient power the Chinese gods and his Kung Fu training.

The last graphic novel is Saints. The main character in this story is a girl named four, she's named four because her parents didn’t feel that there was a point in naming her. Her and Bao cross paths many times throughout this book but have no idea who the other is. She ends up joining religion to gain a sense of belonging and somewhere she feels welcome. By the end of the book, must choose between her nation and her religion.

Next - The Lone Reader: The Soul of an Octopus by Sy Montgomery

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