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by John Okada

The first Japanese American novel, No-No Boy, tells the story of draft resister Ichiro Yamada, whose refusal to comply with the U.S. government after his experience in an internment camp earns him two years in prison and the disapproval of his family and community in Seattle. A touchstone of the immigrant experience in America, it dispels the “model minority” myth and asks pointed questions about assimilation, identity, and loyalty.

“A cautionary tale . . . of the incarceration of immigrant families based on racial prejudice, executive privilege, and the false assertion of military necessity . . . Over a half century later, Okada’s novel challenges us once again with the question of character, asking us, as individuals and as a society, what are we made of.” —Karen Tei Yamashita, from the Introduction

by Carlos Bulosan

Carlos Bulosan’s semi-autobiographical novel America Is in the Heart, similar in time period and setting to Steinbeck’s The Grapes of Wrath, details Bulosan’s experiences with other Filipino migrant laborers who endured intense racial abuse in the fields, orchards, towns, cities, and canneries of California and the Pacific Northwest in the 1930s. His deeply moving account of what it was like to be criminalized in the U.S. as a Filipino migrant demands a reexamination of the American dream.

by Younghill Kang

Young, idealistic Korean immigrant Chungpa Han travels throughout the United States working as a salesman, a domestic worker, and a farmer, and observing along the way the idealism, greed, and shifting values of the industrializing twentieth century.

“Groundbreaking and inspirational . . . A call to action, a call for the country to live up to the dream it has of itself . . . This book is for all of us.” —Alexander Chee, from the foreword

by H. T. Tsiang

A subversive satire by an essential Chinese American voice: in Depression-era New York, Mr. Nut, an American everyman, meets a cast of strange characters—disgruntled cafeteria workers, lecherous old men, sexually exploited women, pesky authors—who eventually convince him to cast off his bourgeois aspirations for upward mobility and become a radical activist. Absurdist, inventive, and suffused with revolutionary fervor, The Hanging on Union Square is a work of blazing wit and originality.

“This is a voice to which the white world . . . will have to listen more and more as time passes.” —Upton Sinclair