The Noh Family, Grace K. Shim (Kokila, May 2021)
The Noh Family, Grace K. Shim (Kokila, May 2021)

When friends give her a 23-and-Me test as a gag, high school senior Chloe Chang doesn’t doesn’t believe anything will come of it. It’s been just Chloe and her mom her whole life. But the DNA test reveals something Chloe never expected—she’s got a whole extended family from her father’s side half a world away in Korea. Her father’s family are owners of a famous high-end department store, and are among the richest families in Seoul. When they learn she exists, they are excited to meet her. Her mother has reservations, she hasn’t had a great relationship with her husband’s family, which is why she’s kept them secret.

Kai the Dancing Butterfly, Crystal Z Lee, Allie Su (illus) (Balestier, February 2022)
Kai the Dancing Butterfly, Crystal Z Lee, Allie Su (illus) (Balestier, February 2022)

Kai and Ami are dancing butterflies from Taiwan! They have a performance coming up at the Winter Festival dance show in the southern part of the island. They are currently in northern Taiwan, so they need to hurry and start flying south. That’s far for a butterfly! Kai is worried about the long journey, and about the big show too. Can Kai step up to the challenge?

It’s become almost fashionable to write about lost Jewish communities around the world. Recent books have been published about Indian Jews and Jews in Harbin, along with those in the Philippines, to name a few. Now Zayn Gregory has come out with The Last Jews of Penang, illustrated by Arif Rafhan. It’s a short book and resembles a children’s picture book, yet is filled with interesting history going back almost two hundred years that can be enjoyed no matter what age.

House of Glass Hearts, Leila Siddiqui (Yali, September 2021)
House of Glass Hearts, Leila Siddiqui (Yali, September 2021)

Maera and her ammi never talk about the Past, a place where they’ve banished their family’s heartache and grief forever. They especially never mention the night Maera’s older brother Asad disappeared from her naana’s house in Karachi ten years ago. But when her grandfather dies and his derelict greenhouse appears in her backyard from thousands of miles away, Maera is forced to confront the horrors of her grandfather’s past. To find out what happened to her brother, she must face the keepers of her family’s secrets—the monsters that live inside her grandfather’s mysterious house of glass.

Pop Flies, Robo-Pets, and Other Disasters, Suzanne Kamata, Tracy Bishop (illus)
Pop Flies, Robo-Pets, and Other Disasters, Suzanne Kamata, Tracy Bishop (illus) (One Elm Books, March 2020)

Thirteen-year-old Satoshi Matsumoto spent the last three years living in Atlanta where he was the star of his middle-school baseball team—a slugger with pro potential, according to his coach. Now that his father’s work in the US has come to an end, he’s moved back to his hometown in rural Japan.