Please welcome Alice Pung today with her list of Favorite Diversity Children’s Books. We are also giving away a copy of her book. Fill out the Rafflecopter at the bottom to enter.
Favorite Diversity Children’s Books from Alice Pung
1. The Tomorrow series by John Marsden
This bestselling Australian series is a more realistic take on the Hunger Games, and came out when I was fourteen. Reading it twenty-two years later, I recognize how powerful the narrative and characterization are still, and more important, what depth there is to the story. The characters are multicultural, but in that effortless, un-self-conscious way Marsden does so well. (YA)
2. Zac & Mia by A. J. Betts
People compare this book to The Fault in Our Stars, but A. J. wrote her book before John Green’s came out, and she works as a teacher in the cancer ward of an Australian hospital. I loved how realistic it is and how the teenagers sound like true teenagers. (YA)
3. Eleanor & Park by Rainbow Rowell
An obvious choice, but one I stand by. Such a beautiful and simple love story with dark realism to it. (YA)
4. The Arrival by Shaun Tan
This is a picture book unlike any other picture book you’ve seen. It’s about a new arrival to an unspecified foreign land and reads more like a graphic novel. It is a work of art by an Oscar-winning artist. (advanced wordless picture book children’s/YA)
5. Iris and the Tiger by Leanne Hall
A beautiful book filled with surrealism, magic, and intrigue that doesn’t talk down to the reader or tie things up too neatly or didactically. A great introduction to the style of Isabelle Allende or Gabriel García Márquez for ten-to-twelve-year-olds. (middle grade)
6. Chenxi and the Foreigner by Sally Rippin
Rippin, one of Australia’s most beloved children’s authors, grew up overseas and studied in China during the 1988 uprisings. This book is about that turbulent time, told as a cross-cultural love story. (middle grade to YA)
7. Little Paradise by Gabrielle Wang
This book was inspired by the life of Wang’s mother and is set in Melbourne and Shanghai in the 1940s. A riveting and beautiful historical novel full of detail and character. (middle grade to YA)
8. Lucy and Linh by Alice Pung
Sorry, I couldn’t resist putting my own book at the end! It’s about a working-class Australian schoolgirl whose Chinese parents are thrilled when she wins a scholarship to an elite private all-girls school. But the reality of the institution is more sinister than any of them realize. (12+}
Lucy and Lihn GIVEAWAY
We are giving away a copy of Alice Pung’s YA book, Lucy and Lihn. Please fill out the Rafflecopter below to enter. We can only ship to U.S. addresses.
Alice Pung is the author of the bestselling memoirs Unpolished Gem, which was published by Penguin in the United States and has been published in several translations, and the award-winning Her Father’s Daughter. She is also the editor of the anthology Growing Up Asian in Australia and the author of the Marly books in the Our Australian Girl series. Learn more about Alice and her books at AlicePung.com.
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To find more diverse and multicultural books for children, please check out our Diversity Book Lists & Activities for Teachers and Parents. We also have Pinterest board full of ideas: