American Panda by Gloria Chao
Mei Lu's parents have her life planned for her. At the age of seventeen, she has followed the life plan that they set for her and is about to enter MIT, studying to become a doctor. Her mother, who gives new meaning to the term helicopter parent, has obtained a copy of her class schedule and relentlessly voicemails Mei, wanting to know where she is and what she is doing every moment of the day. She has even selected a suitable husband for her daughter. Mei, a germaphobe, constantly worries about contracting a disease from normal human contact and struggles to stay alert in biology class. She loves dance and is attracted to a young man who is definitely not Taiwanese.
Gloria Chao's heartwarming tale of the girl struggling to be true to herself, while honoring and respecting her family and their culture is served with a generous quantity of humor. Love her. Laugh with her. Agonize with her. Every individual who seeks to be true to oneself will empathize with Mei.
When Dimple Met Rishi by Sandhya Menon
Dimple is the quintessential techie nerd. Behind her ever-present spectacles is the face of one determined young lady. With high school behind her and plans of Stanford this fall, Dimple will summer at Insomnia Con, an app creation competition for teams of bright young minds from across the country.
However, her Mamma has other plans. The only reason that she consents to her daughter's attendance at this summer program has nothing to do with establishing a career as a web developer and everything to do with finding a husband. Mamma has left nothing to chance. She knows that Rishi Patel, son of family friends will be attending the Con. She is certain that he will be the "Ideal Indian Husband" for Dimple. It's Mamma, scheming marriage plans her for daughter verses a modern-thinking Dimple dreaming of higher education and a career. Who will win?
The Prince and the Dressmaker by Jen Wang
It's a tough life being royalty and the heir to the throne. The expectations are high. Your parents assume that you will continue the traditions set by previous rulers. They also expect you to marry and maintain the royal dynasty. Anxiously, they arrange glittery balls filled with eligible young maidens. When that doesn't work, they plan for intimate dinners with families of princesses from nearby kingdoms.
For Prince Sebastian, this only complicates matters. He carries a closely-guarded secret: he is a crossdresser who goes to great lengths to conceal his passion for elegant feminine attire. Deep inside, he wonders: how can he be the monarch that his parents expect him to be?
It takes a simple dressmaker to help him accept his identity and give him the courage to come out to his parents. Sebastian learns that being true to oneself is the best way to be good son, loyal friend, and prince.
Down and Across by Arvin Ahmadi
Saaket Ferdowski is trying to downplay his Iranian heritage, opting to use the first name Scott. He feels suffocating pressure from his parents to make concrete plans for his life. A string of mediocre grades, unimpressive test scores, and a history of quitting every extra-curricular activity is not his parents' formula for success. His father attempts to keep Scott “on track” by using all his connections to arrange a summer internship for his son at the university lab.
It turns out that Scott has other plans. As soon as his parents leave the country, he ditches the internship and climbs aboard a Greyhound bus, headed to Washington D.C. Ignoring his parents' advice, fabricating false stories during their regularly scheduled check-in phone calls, Scott contacts a famous psychologist living in D.C. to learn the secret to success. Self-discovery will take him places that he and his parents never imagined.