In honor of Asian/Pacific American Heritage month, the Library will host a variety of cultural performances and programs that showcase and celebrate our diverse community.
Books for Adults
By Chang, David
In 2004, Momofuku Noodle Bar opened in a tiny, stark space in Manhattan's East Village. Its young chef-owner, David Chang, worked the line, serving ramen and pork buns to a mix of fellow restaurant cooks and confused diners whose idea of ramen was instant noodles in Styrofoam cups. It would have been impossible to know it at the time--and certainly Chang would have bet against himself--but he, who had failed at almost every endeavor in his life, was about to become one of the most influential chefs of his generation, driven by the question, "What if the underground could become the mainstream?"
By Lahiri, Jhumpa
Los nueve relatos que componen este libro revelan la maestría de Lahiri para trazar una compleja cartografía emocional, la de una serie de personajes que en su búsqueda de la felicidad traspasan fronteras geográficas, culturales y generacionales. Ambientadas tanto en la India como en Estados Unidos, estas historias despliegan la riqueza y la profundidad de la mirada de Lahiri, capaz de detectar los más sutiles conflictos en las relaciones humanas y plasmarlos con una delicadeza incisiva y conmovedora. Nadie que, por cualquier motivo imaginable, se haya sentido alguna vez en su vida extraño y alienado del mundo podrá evitar darse por aludido en estos relatos.
Así pues, en estas páginas soberbias, Jhumpa Lahiri plasma un complejo tapiz de emociones y desasosiegos, una incursión a la intimidad de las personas que, indefectiblemente, resulta cautivadora por su belleza, su poder de evocación y la perennidad de su discurso.
By Lee, Chang-Rae
Tiller is an average American college student with a good heart but minimal aspirations. Pong Lou is a larger-than-life, wildly creative Chinese American entrepreneur who sees something intriguing in Tiller beyond his bored exterior and takes him under his wing. When Pong brings him along on a boisterous trip across Asia, Tiller is catapulted from ordinary young man to talented protégé, and pulled into a series of ever more extreme and eye-opening experiences that transform his view of the world, of Pong, and of himself.
By Hong, Cathy Park
Poet and essayist Cathy Park Hong fearlessly and provocatively blends memoir, cultural criticism, and history to expose fresh truths about racialized consciousness in America. Part memoir and part cultural criticism, this collection is vulnerable, humorous, and provocative--and its relentless and riveting pursuit of vital questions around family and friendship, art and politics, identity and individuality, will change the way you think about our world.
By Cha, Frances
Even as a girl, I knew the only chance I had was to change my face...even before a fortune-teller told me so. Kyuri is a heartbreakingly beautiful woman with a hard-won job at a room salon, an exclusive bar where she entertains businessmen while they drink. Though she prides herself on her cold, clear-eyed approach to life, an impulsive mistake with a client may come to threaten her livelihood. Her roomate, Miho, is a talented artist who grew up in an orphanage but won a scholarship to study art in New York. Returning to Korea after college, she finds herself in a precarious relationship with the super-wealthy heir to one of Korea's biggest companies. Down the hall in their apartment building lives Ara, a hair stylist for whom two preoccupations sustain her: obsession with a boy-band pop star, and a best friend who is saving up for the extreme plastic surgery that is commonplance. And Wonna, one floor below, is a newlywed trying to get pregnant with a child that she and her husband have no idea how they can afford to raise and educate in the cutthroat economy. Together, their stories tell a gripping tale that's seemingly unfamiliar, yet unmistakably universal in the way that their tentative friendships may have to be their saving grace.
by Ho, Jean Chen
Best friends since second grade, Fiona Lin and Jane Shen explore the lonely freeways and seedy bars of Los Angeles together through their teenage years, surviving unfulfilling romantic encounters, and carrying with them the scars of their families' tumultuous pasts. Fiona was always destined to leave, her effortless beauty burnished by fierce ambition--qualities that Jane admired and feared in equal measure. When Fiona moves to New York and cares for a sick friend through a breakup with an opportunistic boyfriend, Jane remains in California and grieves her estranged father's sudden death, in the process alienating an overzealous girlfriend. Strained by distance and unintended betrayals, the women float in and out of each other's lives, their friendship both a beacon of home and a reminder of all they've lost.
by Presser, Brandon
In 1808, an American merchant ship happened upon an uncharted island in the South Pacific and unwittingly solved the biggest nautical mystery of the era: the whereabouts of a band of fugitives who, after seizing their vessel, had disappeared into the night with their Tahitian companions.
by Kwan, Kevin
On her very first morning on the jewel-like island of Capri, Lucie Churchill sets eyes on George Zao and she instantly can't stand him. She can't stand it when he gallantly offers to trade hotel rooms with her so that she can have a view of the Tyrrhenian Sea, she can't stand that he knows more about Casa Malaparte than she does, and she really can't stand it when he kisses her in the darkness of the ancient ruins of a Roman villa and they are caught by her snobbish, disapproving cousin Charlotte.
The daughter of an American-born Chinese mother and a blue-blooded New York father, Lucie has always sublimated the Asian side of herself in favor of the white side, and she adamantly denies having feelings for George. But several years later, when George unexpectedly appears in East Hampton, where Lucie is weekending with her new fiancé, Lucie finds herself drawn to George again. Soon, Lucie is spinning a web of deceit that involves her family, her fiancé, the co-op board of her Fifth Avenue apartment building, and, ultimately, herself as she tries mightily to deny George entry into her world—and her heart.
In this funny, heartfelt story, Billi’s (Awkwafina) family returns to China under the guise of a fake wedding to stealthily say goodbye to their beloved matriarch—the only person that doesn’t know she only has a few weeks to live.
KUKAN, a landmark color film that revealed the atrocities of World War II China to audiences around the world, was the first ever American feature documentary to receive an Academy Award in 1942 and was considered lost for decades. When filmmaker Robin Lung discovers a badly damaged film print of KUKAN, she pieces together the inspirational tale of the two renegades behind the making of it -- Chinese American playwright Li Ling-Ai and cameraman Rey Scott.
The top-selling female artist in the world, Yayoi Kusama overcame impossible odds to bring her radical artistic vision to the world stage. People are experiencing her installation Infinity Mirrored Rooms, as she continues to create new work every day.
In this real-life "My Big Fat Greek Wedding," an Indian-American man who is about to turn 30 gets help from his parents and extended family so he can start looking for a wife the traditional Indian way.
"Winner of the 2017 Asian American International Film Festival Audience Choice Award, Documentary, PROOF OF LOYALTY: KAZUO YAMANE AND THE NISEI SOLDIERS OF HAWAII tells the story of a Japanese American who played a crucial strategic role in World War II. He and his fellow Nisei from Hawaii combatted prejudice and discrimination to loyally serve their country. Their extraordinary service, mostly untold, ultimately changed the course of U.S. history.
This acclaimed documentary follows the controversial 11-time Jeopardy! champion Arthur Chu as he attempts to leverage his viral celebrity to make positive social change online.
Following a world premiere at the 2017 Slamdance Film Festival, the film has played in competition at Hot Docs, screened as the Centerpiece film at CAAMfest and DisOrient Film Festival, and garnered a Best Documentary Jury Award at the Austin Asian American Film Festival.
Pacific Islanders serve in the U.S. military in disproportionally high numbers, and have suffered the highest casualty rates in the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan. The men and women of Guam, a U.S. territory in the Pacific, are American citizens and serve in our country’s military at a rate three times higher than the rest of the country. Learn why the island’s returning veterans say they can’t get the healthcare they need.
This award-winning documentary follows the lives and careers of four Asian-American rappers trying to break into hip-hop culture, which often treats them as outsiders. Sharing dynamic live performance footage and revealing interviews, these artists are driven to make the most skeptical critics into believers.
In the heart of Chinatown, New York, an ornery, chain-smoking, newly widowed 80-year-old Grandma (Tsai Chin) is eager to live life as an independent woman, despite the worry of her family. When a local fortune teller (Wai Ching Ho) predicts a most auspicious day in her future, Grandma decides to head to the casino and goes all in, only to land herself on the wrong side of luck…suddenly attracting the attention of some local gangsters. Desperate to protect herself, Grandma employs the services of a bodyguard from a rival gang (Corey Ha) and soon finds herself right in the middle of a Chinatown gang war.