BookDragon Books for the Diverse Reader

Pie-Biter by Ruthanne Lum McCunn, illustrated by You-Shan Tang [in What Do I Read Next? Multicultural Literature]

Pie-BiterHoi, a young Chinese boy, arrives in America in 1865 to work on the railroads. Because his favorite food is American pies, his friends rename him “Pie-Biter.” He quickly grows to be a strong young man. When the transcontinental railroad is completed, Pie-Biter establishes himself as a train packer, delivering goods to places not accessible by the new railroads.

During the late 19th century, railroad companies imported Chinese immigrant laborers to build the transcontinental railroad. This story is based on a true story of a young Chinese laborer who lived and worked in the Pacific Northwest for 20 years. Over the decades since its original printing, multiple editions in both Chinese and Spanish followed.

Review: “Asian American Titles,” What Do I Read Next? Multicultural Literature, Gale Research, 1997

Readers: Children

Published: 1983

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