Wednesday, April 11, 2012

All Things Asian: Characters in Books

Welcome to All Things Asian! Now, how often have you seen an Asian character in a YA novel? Not very often, eh? Below is a compiled list of Asian characters. How many do you recognize?
Lauren, Angelfire by Courtney Allison Moulton
A girl who looked about Will's age sat in a chair across from him. She turned her head to look at us, her long, black-brown hair swinging. She was a beautiful Asian girl, and she smiled sweetly as we approached.
Della Tsang, Born at Midnight by C.C. Hunter
The girl lowered her glasses, and Kylie got a look at her eyes for the first time. They were black and slightly slanted, exotic, as if she was part Asian. "My name's Della... Della Tsang."
Aline Penhallow, City of Glass by Cassandra Clare
The girl was slender, with glossy dark hair pulled back from her face, and a mischievous expression. Her delicate chin narrowed into a point. She wasn't exactly pretty, but she was very striking. (Her mother, "'Mrs. Penhallow-Jia-used to run the Beijing Institute.")
Magnus Bane, Clockwork Angel by Cassandra Clare
He touched a piece of twisted rope nearly at the bottom of the pile, and thought of his mother, herself the daughter of a Dutch father and an Indonesian woman who had died in childbirth and whose name Magnus had never known. (From the short story "Magnus' Vow")
Jem Carstairs, Clockwork Angel by Cassandra Clare
The young man who appeared at the mouth of the alley was pale in the lamplight — paler even than he usually was, which was quite pale indeed. He was bareheaded, which drew the eye immediately to his hair: it was a rare bright silver color, the shade of an untarnished coin. His eyes were the same silver, and his fine-boned face was angular, the slight curve of his eyes the only clue to his heritage.
Cho Chang, Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban by J.K. Rowling
Their Seeker, Cho Chang, was the only girl on their team. She was shorter than Harry by about a head, and Harry couldn't help noticing, nervous as he was, that she was extremely pretty.
Allison Sekemoto, The Immortal Rules by Julie Kagawa
My reflection stared at me, a dirty-faced girl with straight black hair and "squinty eyes," as Rat put it. At least I didn't have teeth like a rodent.
Lindsey Lim, Lola and the Boy Next Door by Stephanie Perkins
When we arrive, a Korean gentleman in a velveteen tracksuit greets us. He's doing tai chi between the palm trees. "Hello, Dolores! How was your birthday?" Mr. Lim is the only person apart from my parents (when they're mad) who calls me by my real name. His daughter Lindsey is my best friend; they live a few streets over.

Takumi, Looking for Alaska by John Green
The Colonel introduced me (as "Pudge") to the guys at the wobbly wooden table, but I only registered the name Takumi, whom Alaska had mentioned yesterday. A thin Japanese guy only a few inches taller than Colonel, Takumi talked with his mouth full as I chewed slowly, savoring the bean-y crunch.
Reese Kinjo, Wanderlove by Kirsten Hubbard
Reese... gave me own of her feeble, girlish hugs... A piece of her black hair fell into my open mouth. As soon as my bedroom door shut, I noticed a plate of raspberry bars on my nightstand. A typical Reese Kinjo gesture: reconciliation by fresh-baked goods.
Jacob, North of Beautiful by Justina Chen Headley
I swiveled around to see a guy near my age, very much wearing black, very much alive. Outside of Halloween and my infrequent trips to Seattle, I'd rarely seen anyone quite like him: an Asian Goth in a black trench coat, black jeans, black rock concert shirt.
Theo, Dramarama by E. Lockhart
A boy my age sat at the baby grand. He was Asian American, medium weight, and looked to be about my height. Shaggy black hair and a long oval face. A wide nose that might have been broken once. Sharp eyes and a faded blue T-shirt. He was looking down at the piano in complete concentration. I could see his back muscles working through the thin fabric. He had almost no hair on his arms. I walked up to the piano and leaned over it, watching him play.
    For the comments: Can you think of any other Asian characters in books that I have not mentioned?
    All Things Asian
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    And don't forget to check out That Hapa Chick and My Words Ate Me today for more posts!

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