Tradition, culture, and celebration!
Local authors Jamie Jo Hoang and Cátia Chien will be exhibiting at the Firecracker Festival on Sunday, February 25th for their books. Books are available to be purchased ahead of time online or at the event.
The Firecracker Festival is a Lunar New Year Celebration in the heart of historic Chinatown, Los Angeles, CA. The opening ceremony hosts lion dancers and a traditional lighting of 100,000 firecrackers
Event is free and family friendly.
About My Father, the Panda Killer:
A poignant coming-of-age story told in two alternating voices: a California teenager railing against the Vietnamese culture, juxtaposed with her father as an eleven-year-old boat person on a harrowing and traumatic refugee journey from Vietnam to the United States.
San Jose, 1999. Jane knows her Vietnamese dad can't control his temper. Lost in a stupid daydream, she forgot to pick up her seven-year-old brother, Paul, from school. Inside their home, she hands her dad the stick he hits her with. This is how it's always been. She deserves this. Not because she forgot to pick up Paul, but because at the end of the summer she's going to leave him when she goes away to college. As Paul retreats inward, Jane realizes she must explain where their dad's anger comes from. The problem is, she doesn't quite understand it herself.
Đà Nẵng, 1975. Phúc (pronounced /fo͞ok/, rhymes with duke) is eleven the first time his mother walks him through a field of mines he's always been warned never to enter. Guided by cracks of moonlight, Phúc moves past fallen airplanes and battle debris to a refugee boat. But before the sun even has a chance to rise, more than half the people aboard will perish. This is only the beginning of Phúc's perilous journey across the Pacific, which will be fraught with Thai pirates, an unrelenting ocean, starvation, hallucination, and the unfortunate murder of a panda.
Told in the alternating voices of Jane and Phúc, My Father, The Panda Killer is an unflinching story about war and its impact across multiple generations, and how one American teenager forges a path toward accepting her heritage and herself.
About Jamie Jo Hoang:
Jamie Jo Hoang, the daughter of Vietnamese refugees, grew up in Orange County, CA--not the wealthy part. She worked for MGM Studios and later, as a docu-series producer. Now she writes novels and blogs full time. When Jamie's not writing, she's wandering, pondering, and chasing experiences. Her self-published first novel, Blue Sun, Yellow Sky, is a Kirkus Reviews Best Book of the Year.
Photo credit: Ryan Slinger
About On the Tip of a Wave:
From New York Times bestselling author of Eyes That Kiss in the Corners, Joanna Ho, and critically acclaimed illustrator, Cátia Chien comes a moving, powerful picture book about the life and work of activist and artist, Ai Weiwei.
He [Ai Weiwei] felt the life jackets and an idea curled and crested through his fingertips. The way it always did.
Told in Joanna Ho's signature lyrical writing, this is the story that shines a light on Ai Weiwei and his journey, specifically how the Life Jackets exhibit at Konzerthaus Berlin came to be. As conditions for refugees worsened, Ai Weiwei was inspired by the discarded life jackets on the shores of Lesbos to create a bold installation that would grab the attention of the world. Cátia Chien masterfully portrays the intricate life of Ai Weiwei with inspirations from woodblock printing and a special emphasis on the color orange, the same color of the life jackets that became a beacon of hope. Through Cátia's dynamic and stunning illustrations, we see how Ai Weiwei became the activist and artist he is today while proving the power of art within humanity.
About the illustrator:
Cátia Chien is a Brazilian Taiwanese artist. She's the illustrator of such titles as The Bear and the Moon, which was a Society of Illustrators Gold Medal for Original Art winner and a Golden Kite Award for picture book illustration winner, A Boy and a Jaguar, an ALA Notable Book and recipient of the Schneider Family Book Award. Her art has been shown in galleries worldwide, including the Beijing National Gallery and the Bologna Children's Book Fair exhibition. She is also the founder of A Thousand Worlds, a curated picture book directory celebrating BIPOC creators. She lives in California.
Photo provided by author