Happy Korean American Day! Read New Middle-Grade Books from Korean American Voices

In honor of Korean-American Day, we’ve selected five of our favorite middle-grade books. The titles are read as follows from left to right: Jennifer Chan is Not Alone, Double O Stephen and the Ghostly Realm, Pippa Park Crush at First Sight, You Are Here: Connecting Flights, and Make a Move, Sunny Park!

Pippa Park Crush at First Sight by Erin Yun

“When I wrote Pippa Park, I knew that I wanted the main character to be Korean because I knew a younger version of myself would have appreciated it and because all children deserve to see themselves represented in the literature they read.” –Erin Yun

The sequel to Pippa Park Raises Her Game, Pippa Park Crush at First Sight follows Pippa Park as she juggles friendships, bullying, crushes, and family. As she continues to try to feel like she belongs at her new school (and with her new friends, the Royals), a face from the past makes her question her huge crush on Eliot. When Pippa is tasked with hosting the annual Christmas Eve party that could make or break her social life, she’ll be reminded of the importance of family, true friends, and staying true to yourself! (Ages 9-12)

Jennifer Chan Is Not Alone by Tae Keller
In this book by Tae Keller (the author of the critically acclaimed When You Trap a Tiger), Mallory Moss’s world is turned upside-down when Jennifer Chan moves in across the street. When Jennifer mysteriously disappears, Mallory sets out to find her. As Mallory uncovers the truth about Jennifer’s disappearance, she’ll also uncover truths about herself. (Ages 8-12)

Double O Stephen and the Ghostly Realm by Angela Ahn
Meet Stephen, who loves pirates but doesn’t love his last name: Oh-O’Driscoll, given to him by his Korean mother and Irish father. Stephen likes giving things the right name, so he creates a new word for what he wants to be: a piventurate, a sailor who passionately seeks adventure. When Stephen gets suspended from school, he meets Captain Sapperton, a real pirate ghost! Join Stephen as he embarks on an otherworldly adventure with Captain Sapperton and his ghostly crew. (Ages 8-12)

You Are Here: Connecting Flights edited by Ellen Oh
An incident at a TSA security checkpoint sets off a chain of events that impacts the lives of twelve young Asian Americans in the crowded and chaotic airport. As their paths intersect, they’ll learn the value of friendship, courage, and language. This exploration of identity features stories by East and Southeast Asian American authors including Linda Sue Park, Erin Entrada Kelly, Grace Lin, Traci Chee, Mike Chen, Meredith Ireland, Mike Jung, Minh Le, Ellen Oh, Randy Ribay, Christina Soontornvat, and Susan Tan. (Ages 8-12)

Make a Move, Sunny Park by Jessica Kim
Jessica Kim (author of Stand Up, Yumi Chung!) tells the story of seventh-grader Sunny Park. Sunny loves K-pop, dancing, and her best friend, Bailey, who decides that the two of them should audition for the school dance team. Sunny says yes, even though she’s terrified of performing in public! But when Sunny makes the team and Bailey doesn’t, a rift forms between them and continues to grow. Sunny is set on a path of self-discovery and must learn how to step out of her best friend’s shadow to stand in the spotlight! (Ages 8-12)