Multicultural Chapter Book for Girls
Millicent Min is an 11-year-old girl genius with no social skills or friends except for her Grandmother Maddie. While Millicent can rationalize her solitude, her parents and grandmother co-conspire to socialize her. They force her to play volleyball and to tutor an annoying Chinese-American kid, Stanford Wong, who is the polar opposite of her. Things look up for Millicent when she makes her first friend, Emily, at volleyball. But things come to a head when Emily finds out that Millicent and Stanford are lying to her as they both try to hide their tutoring arrangement from her. And to make matters worse, Maddie decides to move to England. Millicent is a genius, but can she figure out how to repair her friendship?
This novel plays on the theme of the stereotypical Asian geek/genius and Lisa Yee captures the voice of Millicent Min, Girl Genius so perfectly that you cringe for her as much as you root for her. She’s added an atypical Asian American character, Stanford Wong, who’d you think would be a geek as well, but Stanford is a struggling student but good-looking jock. Yee is a vibrant voice for Asian American children’s literature. And if your child likes this book, try Stanford Wong Flunks Big-Time which tells this same story from his point of view. [chapter book, ages 9-14)
Millicent Min, Girl Genius by Lisa Yee
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BEST #OWNVOICES CHILDREN’S BOOKS: My Favorite Diversity Books for Kids Ages 1-12 is a book that I created to highlight books written by authors who share the same marginalized identity as the characters in their books.