Last name mispronounced by every teacher? Check.
Being called every Asian nationality except Thai? Check.
Getting teased for not knowing the right clothes to wear. Check.
In elementary school, Christina wasn’t happy about moving from Dallas to a smaller Texas town so her Thai dad and white mom could open a Thai-Chinese restaurant.
The only Asian kid in town, she was delighted to become best friends with Megan, whose father had emigrated from Iran.
Then they get to middle school, where popular kids get by with everything, including racist remarks.
Most popular of all are the cheerleaders, so Christina and Megan decide to try out!
Oh, Megan isn’t her partner?
Oh, the finalists will be voted on by the entire 7th grade?!
Oh, this is scarier than roller coasters!!
Based on the author’s real-life experiences as a Thai American kid in a small Texas town, this great graphic novel shows us that your best efforts are more important than winning every contest.
What middle school memory stands out most for you?
Book info: The Tryout / Christina Soontornvat; art by Joanna Cacao. Graphix / Scholastic, 2022. [author site] [illustrator site] [publisher site] Review copy and cover image courtesy of the publisher.