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Books for Adults

The Monstrous Misses Mai by Va n Hoang book cover

A determined young woman in 1950s Los Angeles walks a darker city than she ever imagined in a spellbinding novel about the power to make dreams come true―whatever the sacrifice.

Los Angeles brims with opportunity in 1959―though not for aspiring fashion designer Cordelia Mai Yin, the first-generation child of Vietnamese immigrants, who finds the city unkind to outsiders and as dispirited as her own family. When Cordi rents a cheap loft in an old apartment building, she quickly warms to kindred souls Tessa, Audrey, and Silly. They also want better things and have pasts they’d rather forget. That they all share the same middle name makes their friendship seem like destiny.

As supportive as they are of each other, it’s a struggle just to eke out a living, let alone hope to see their wishes for success come true. Until an ever-present and uncannily charming acquaintance of the landlord’s offers a solution to their problems. He promises to fulfill their every dream. All it takes is a little magic. And a small sacrifice.

As one surprisingly effective spell leads to another, their wishes get bigger. But so does the price they must pay. Amid the damaged seams of her life so far, Cordi must realize her own power in order to rip free, without losing everything she’s worked so hard to achieve.

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Release Date: February 4, 2025

It’s the golden age of Hollywood. For two Vietnamese dreamers, success means conjuring a magical break in a spellbinding novel about the frightening price of fame by the author of The Monstrous Misses Mai.

More like sisters than best friends, Issa Bui and Olivia Nong grew up dreaming of becoming movie stars. But for young Vietnamese women in 1930s Hollywood, the MGM back lot seems unreachable. Undeterred, Issa knows she’s meant for great things. The blood of shamans runs through her veins. To find fame in this town, for herself and for Olivia, Issa needs to make connections. For starters, with her dead grandmother Bà Ngoại.

 

Frightening enough in life—Issa’s own mother forbade any contact—Bà Ngoại is even more intimidating in death. A formidable presence of smoke, promises, and pacts, Bà Ngoại introduces Issa and Olivia to her friend on the other side: the late Ava Lin Rang, a singularly magnetic Asian star of the silent screen. Ava coaches, encourages, and utilizes her own unique influence to open doors for her determined protégés.

As Issa begins drawing on her own untapped powers, every dream is coming true. But in a city of illusions, at what cost?

Books for Middle Grade Readers

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** A 2020 Kirkus Best Book of the Year

** A 2022 Panda Book Awards Nominee

** A 2023 Garden State Teen Book Award Nominee

Eleven-year-old Thom Ngho is keeping a secret: she’s strong. Like suuuuper strong. Freakishly strong. And it’s making it impossible for her to fit in at her new middle school.

 

In a desperate bid to get rid of her super strength, Thom makes a deal with the Monkey King, a powerful deity and legendary trickster she accidentally released from his 500-year prison sentence. Thom agrees to help the Monkey King get back his magical staff if he'll take away her strength.

 

Soon Thom is swept up in an ancient and fantastical world in where demons, dragons, and Jade princesses actually exist. But she quickly discovers that magic can’t cure everything, and dealing with the trickster god might be more trouble than it’s worth.

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In this sequel to Girl Giant and the Monkey King, Thom and her friends set off on a far flung adventure to save the Heavens and the Jade Emperor from certain destruction.

Thom Ngho thought the Monkey King was her friend—he taught her to control her super strength and to stand up for herself. But really he was just using her. He tricked her into stealing from the Heavens and releasing him from his 500-year prison. Now the Monkey King is waging a war against the Heavens and Thom must do everything in her power to fix the mess she made.

Determined to prevent a war, Thom and her dragon friend Kha set off on an adventure across the Heavens to search for allies. But with the stakes higher than ever, the price for help may be more than Thom is willing to pay....

 

This richly woven middle-grade fantasy series is full of humor, magic, and heart, and will appeal to readers who love Roshani Chokshi and Sayantani DasGupta. 

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Hidden Tails is a story about two orphaned siblings stranded on a mysterious island hotel filled with secrets and strange creatures. 

Publication is scheduled for Spring 2025

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Mekisha Telfer at Roaring Brook Press has bought Auntie Q's Golden Claws Nail Salon by Van Hoang (Girl Giant and the Monkey King), a contemporary middle grade novel in which a 12-year-old girl begrudgingly spends her summer working at her aunt's nail salon, but as she gets to know the aunties and uncles who work there, she begins to see them, her parents, and her heritage in a new light.

 

Publication is slated for spring 2025; Mary C. Moore at Aevitas Creative Management sold world English rights.

Short Stories

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Prequel short to Girl Giant and the Monkey King

Read it for free by subscribing to my newsletter (at the top of the page)!

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A middle grade anthology & compendium of mythical creatures from Southeast Asian lore.

My short story about the Vietnamese unicorn, con kỳ lân, will be included.

Expected publication January 1, 2025

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