My Opinion Counts More by Skylar

American Born Chinese, by Gene Luen Yang, presents readers with a strong message that a person’s mindset about themselves can be based on other people’s opinions. The main character, Jin, has a transformer toy that comes up multiple times in this book. The transformer represents what Jin, wants most: Just to fit in and look like everybody else. Jin is from China-Town in San Francisco and is moving to a predominantly white town, (unnamed in book) which is nothing like what Jin is used to.  When he started off at Mayflower Elementary, Jin changed the foods he ate because all of the other kids judged and made fun of him. As he got older, Jin Transformed his hair to look like “the popular white boy’s” because he was interested in a girl named Amelia. Lastly, Jin sacrificed his entire heritage of America Chinese for what he thought was the perfect all American life by transforming himself into Danny. Yet one of the other secondary characters, Monkey King, wouldn’t let Jin forget who he really was. Also, a secondary character named Wei-Chen, originally Monkey King’s son, wanted to be just like his father and help people like Jin find themselves. Along the way Wei-Chen lost sight of his mission and what he was there to do. In conclusion, we see how the characters evolve in the story from being insecure and intimidated, to knowing and accepting who they really are. In this book, transformation teaches us not to sacrifice your true self because you may lose people who are close to you. Although, sometimes change is inevitable because we are constantly growing; physically and mentally.

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