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Great news in April

costco book stackGreat news in April!

April started with terrific news: Daughter of Xanadu has been nominated for the 2012 Best Fiction for Young Adults list by the American Library Association! 

And on April 2, I had an enjoyable booksigning event at Costco in Issaquah, where I talked to many, many people about Daughter of Xanadu. See this stack of books on the right? The sight of it literally took my breath away a week earlier.  Now most of them have been sold! I did sign the few that remain.  This store is right next to Costco's corporate headquarters.

March 31 marked the end of the first quarter that Daughter of Xanadu has been on sale. It has attracted 12 reviews on (almost all 5 star) and 27 reviews on (average 4.04 stars), where it is still ranked #1 on the list of "New YA Historical Fiction in 2011." I've also done interviews or guest posts on 22 independent blogs.

Since publication, I spoke at six bookstore events, rangiwine&convRHRng from Bellingham to Portland, five schools, two library events, and one book festival. I'm moving on to a new format, "wine and conversation with the author," starting with an event at the Red House in Renton (right). I'll also speak to three classes at Maret School in Washington, D.C. this month, and I've arranged to talk to several book clubs. The intense book promotion phase is winding down. It sure has been fun!

Now I'm hard at work writing the sequel. I hope to have a manuscript ready to submit within a month. I also am finishing two other books: Voices of the Second Wave, Chinese Americans in Seattle and a reprint of my award-winning children's book, The Secret Voice of Gina Zhang. Both have fresh new covers and should be out in May.

- April 4, 2011 -

Press and blog appearances

Daughter of Xanadu's visibility has continued strong since publication.  Here are the latest reviews, blog interviews and guest blogs:

May 3:  Article based on interview, Norelle Done on Seattle Wrote blog.

April 8: 5-star review on The Bookaholics by Aik Chien of Malaysia.

March 23: Amber of Squeaky Clean Reads wrote a review saying: "Daughter of Xanadu is not squeaky clean, but mostly clean."

March 21: Damsels in Regress: Bringing history back to life (review and interview by Emilie Bishop)

March 16:  Black Fingernailed Reviews (5-star review)

March 14: Dreaming in Books (review)

March 9:  Shauna Yusko, librarian at Evergreen Junior High in Redmond interviewed me for her blog after my school visit there on March 3.

March 2:, a website devoted to multicultural books from around the world for children and young adults, with a particular focus on the Pacific Rim and South Asia (interview and review)

Feb. 27:     Reading the Past (review, with comments)

Feb. 13: (guest blog)

Feb 9:       Feathered Quill (interview)

And here's the latest press:

Mercer Island Patch posted this article online on Feb. 11, 2011:

-- "When East Meets West: Author Dori Jones Yang," by DeAnn Rossetti.  Daughter of Xanadu, an adventurous and romantic tale by Dori Jones Yang, could easily be seen as a parallel to her own life in this century in the United States."

"That's Shanghai" magazine posted this review on urbanatomy on Feb. 11, 2011:

-- The first review in China, called "Move Over Mulan," by Tom Carter

How are sales going?

"How are sales going?"

Several people have asked me this, and I have to answer: "I don't know yet!"  Publishers give out statements only once a quarter.  However, . . . it's looking good so far!

People laugh at authors who check their amazon sales rankings every few hours, but I am delighted to say my sales ranking has fallen dramatically!  (#1 is the the national bestseller, so, as in golf, the lower the score the better.)  On amazon, Daughter of Xanadu has six reviewer ratings, all 5 stars!  An amazing average. Plus, it was recently listed on amazon's China Historical Fiction "Essential Reading List."

On Goodreads, Daughter of Xanadu already has 16 reviews (and 27 ratings), with an average of 4.15 stars. It has remained at #1 on the "New YA Historical Fiction 2011" list, and is #10 out of 70 books on the overall "Historical Fiction 2011" list.

Daughter of Xanadu's Barnes and Noble sales ranking is falling rapidly, too, though there are no reviews yet posted there.

On youtube, the Daughter of Xanadu book trailer video has 545 views, and my author interview video has had 143 views.

I've had two newspaper interviews published (plus a short article in the Seattle Times February 1), three print reviews, plus 17 online blog reviews. In addition, during my blog tour, I "appeared" on 15 different blogs, either answering questions or writing a guest blog.

So - so far, so good!  I'm happy.  I'm counting on a groundswell, from the bottom up.

Just today I had a terrific review in The Bulletin, which said, among other things:

"The fictional Emmajin is a fascinating character, and her role in the story is all the more captivating for her narration’s constant shifts in perspective brought about by her experiences: her summer with Marco teaches her to question the expansion of the Mongol Empire by means of violence, her front-line experience as a soldier in the Battle of Vochan teaches her to question the morality of war despite its ingrained role in her upbringing, and her budding attraction to/and eventual love for Marco teach her to rethink her preconceived notions of manliness."


- Feburary 1, 2011 - 

Great reception in Portland

Great reception at Powell's Books in Oregon - and at Seattle University

On Chinese New Year, February 3, I had the pleasure of speaking abPowells 2out Daughter of Xanadu at Powell's Books - the largest independent new and used bookstore in the world.

My reading was held at Powell's Books at Cedar Hills Crossing, Beaverton, Oregon, a terrific, huge store, able to accommodate author events with Powerpoint presentations.

Many of my friends and relatives in Portland came out to support me - and brought their friends, too!  So I had an audience of more than 30 people - a standing-room-only crowd.

Lots of laughtePowells 1r, eager faces, nice compliments, and the opportunity to sign books for people.

Then, on Saturday, February 5, I gave a talk on "What Marco Polo and I learned about Christianity in Asia." Did you know there was an Asian Christian church, totally separate from the European one, with churches all across Asia in Marco's day?  And that Khubilai Khan's mother was Christian?  Neither did I, till I started doing this research. Someday soon, I'll do a "FAQ" on the topic.

Two great talks, with good turnouts. Thanks, friends!  Each time I speak I attract more new people, too. That's a wonderful feeling.  The word is getting out!

First bookstore appearances

Elliott Bay readingCelebrating the publication of Daughter of Xanadu!

On January 15th and 16th, more than one hundred people came to hear me speak about Daughter of Xanadu and help celebrate the publication of this historical novel!   Saturday night, I celebrated with a book launch party at Parkplace Books in Kirkland, and on Sunday afternoon I hosted a talk and reading at Elliott Bay Book Co. in Seattle.  Each attracted almost twice as many people as I expected!

For about 30 minutes, I spoke and showed pictures with a PowerPoint presentation, explaining how and why I wrote this book and why I'm so fascinated by Marco Polo and the Mongol Empire. Then I took questions and signed books.

What a thrill!  It's a wonderful feeling -- a long-awaited joy.

Parkplace celebration

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