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In 1939, unable to find regular jobs because of the Great Depression, long-time friends Cal Chin and Barney Young tour the country as members of a Chinese American basketball team.

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In my opinion, [a:Laurence Yep|14199|Laurence Yep|https://images.gr-assets.com/authors/1208559025p2/14199.jpg] was YAing before YA was a genre, and this is another good middle grade historical fiction read.

When people think Chinese in America, it tends to go gold rush/railroad or post-1965 waves... but we've been here, and a tale inspired by the Hong Wah Kues brings those hidden history gems to life. Calvin "Flash" Chin is a cocky young adult who just can't find a job (there's nothing personal- it's 1939 and lots of people are out of work.... so why would that shopowner hire a Chinese face over the long line of white people? Heaven forbid an Okie show up though). He excels on the court, though, and touring basketball teams are just the ticket for seeing the world and getting paid*.

*sort of. Money gets tight in winter.

It's been a while since I've read any Golden Mountain Chronicles, but now I want to go back and catch up with the Youngs and the Chins. Flash is a little older than other GMC protagonists (though that's necessary to the story of being part of these traveling teams). ( )
  Daumari | Dec 30, 2017 |
Golden Mountain Chronicles: 1939
  jhawn | Jul 31, 2017 |
During the Great Depression in 1939, Cal and Barney are best friends living in Chinatown. Unable to find jobs because people refuse to hire Chinese, they occasionally can make money playing basketball on the streets. They are recruited to play for a traveling team, the Dragons, and they barnstorm across America playing anyone and everyone along the way. But as an all-Chinese team, they experience a wide swath of prejudice and racism, as well as a rattletrap car that falls apart regularly, bad weather, poorly maintained highways, and tensions within the team as Cal must choose to either be loyal to the team or to try to make his own way as a basketball star. The story was inspired by the real Depression-era traveling team, the Hong Wah Kues. Excellent writing, especially for the basketball games! Perfect for sports fans, this would also work well with Roll of Thunder Hear My Cry for both the examples of prejudice and the time period. Laurence Yep is a fantastic writer, and he has another winner here. 6th grade and up. ( )
  KarenBall | Sep 23, 2011 |
I wanted this book to be good, mostly because of its historical grounding and Chinese-American characters. But I could not even finish the book. Anyone attempting to read it should have a high tolerance for play-by-play descriptions of basketball games and egocentric young male narrators. ( )
  cnesbitt | Oct 6, 2009 |
Another brilliant book in the Golden Mountain Chronicles. It is written by Laurence Yep with his tremendous narrative velocity. Dragon Blood is almost impossible to put down. A beautifully written book that takes you into the Chinese- American culture during the great depression. Dragon Road will burn itslef into your memory line by line. It is lyrical and startling, brillant.
Laurence Yep writes with the precission and insight. For a boy in middle school, I think this would be perfect for a fall book report. ( )
  chstress | Aug 1, 2008 |
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In 1939, unable to find regular jobs because of the Great Depression, long-time friends Cal Chin and Barney Young tour the country as members of a Chinese American basketball team.

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