Synopses & Reviews
"Yoo (Sixteen Years in Sixteen Seconds) spotlights a famous Chinese-American actress from the golden days of Hollywood. Growing up poor in Los Angeles's Chinatown, Anna May Wong was fascinated with the local movie scene. 'She regularly skipped school to watch the action on the set and ask questions about filmmaking.' Lin Wang's (A Single Red Thread) elegant paintings in muted hues capture the actress's emotions in her expressive eyes framed by dark bangs. Full-page spreads showcase her stylish garb snazzy flapper attire or traditional Chinese dress and her early-20th-century surroundings. The conversational narrative uses many descriptive vignettes from her life (e.g., a girlhood visit to the movie theater, a trip to China) to briskly move the story from her youth to her early movie career. Peppered throughout are examples of the racism she experienced ('Movie studios forbade actors and actresses of color to kiss their white costars'). Always countering these are Anna May's responses, at first her strong feelings and, later, her decision to only portray roles that didn't denigrate Chinese-Americans. A fascinating account of the life of a determined actress. Ages 6 11. (June)" Publishers Weekly (Copyright Reed Business Information, Inc.)
Anna May Wong--the first Chinese-American movie star--was a pioneer of the cinema. Her spirited determination to make her dreams come true in the face of discrimination is an inspiration to all. Full color.
Born in 1905, Anna May Wong spent her childhood working in her family's laundry in Los Angeles s Chinatown. Whenever she could afford it, Anna May slipped off to the movies, escaping to a world of adventure, glamour, and excitement. After seeing a movie being filmed in her neighborhood, young Anna May was hooked. She decided she would become a movie star
Anna May struggled to pursue an acting career in Hollywood in the 1930s. There were very few roles for Asian Americans, and many were demeaning and stereotypical. Anna May made the most of each limited part. She worked hard and always gave her best performance. Finally, after years of unfulfilling roles, Anna May began crusading for more meaningful roles for herself and other Asian American actors.
Anna May Wong the first Chinese American movie star was a pioneer of the cinema. Her spirited determination in the face of discrimination is an inspiration to all who must overcome obstacles so that their dreams may come true.