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Joanna Ho Books In Order

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Publication Order of Picture Books

Playing at the Border: A Story of Yo-Yo Ma (2021)Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
Eyes That Kiss in the Corners (2021)Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
Eyes That Speak to the Stars (2022)Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle

About Joanna Ho

American writer and teach Joanna Ho has a lot to write about, with her highly engaging voice, and immersive style. Writing books that are appreciated by readers from all over, she pushes the format forwards, taking it to new and interesting places. Her writing has gone on to be enjoyed by a worldwide audience, with readers far and wide relating to her work. Providing a fresh and unique perspective, she’s made her books entirely her own, as they speak directly to the reader in an intimate manner.

Largely focusing on stories for younger readers and children, her books are colorfully illustrated, depicting a range of subjects. Often writing about her own experiences, they seem wholly authentic and real, feeling extremely honest and genuine. This has seen her build her profile around the world, as she seeks to impart a message through her work that resonates. Giving her books a sense of weight, she draws from her own cultural roots, showing another side of life for her audience.

Her characters are very well established, as they feel fully fleshed out, with fully three-dimensional personalities that leap out from the page. Often writing from a progressive stance, she seeks to shine a light on racism and bigotry, eradicating it in a positive and uplifting manner. Helping the reader in many cases too, she’s an important writer whose work will leave an impact long after the book has been put down. There’s far more to come in future, as she’s definitely a writer to watch, with plenty more titles planned for release on the horizon.

Early and Personal Life

The daughter of immigrants from China and Taiwan, Joanna Ho would grow up in America with a keen sense of her cultural roots. This would come to define much of her writing, helping to inspire her, allowing her to develop her own personal style. Born in St. Paul in Minnesota, she would grow up with a strong passion for the written word, immersing herself heavily in both reading and writing.

Moving extensively across America, she would live in a number of places including Maryland, Philadelphia, and Baltimore, as well as Taiwan and Taipei. Settling down in the Bay Area of California, she would focus on her writing, creating the voice she’s known for today. Living with her family, she has two children, and she’s always on the lookout for her next big idea, as she continues to write every day.

Writing Career

In 2021 Joanna Ho would publish her first book, which was titled ‘Eyes The Kiss in the Corners,’ and this would introduce her as an author the first time. She would follow this up that same year with ‘Playing at the Border: A Story of Yo-Yo Ma,’ which was a non-fiction biographical account of the musician Yo-Yo Ma. All of this while working as the vice principal of a high-school in the Bay Area.

Previously working as an English teacher as well, she’s gained a BA in psychology from the University of Pennsylvania. She also has a Master’s degree from Berkeley at the Principal Leadership Institute there, also going on to become a dean as well. She has a lot more to come, and has written other books including ‘Eyes That Speak to the Stars,’ which is another children’s picture book.

Eyes That Kiss in the Corners

First coming out through the HarperCollins publishing imprint, this would be a stand-alone released in 2021 on the 5th of January. Illustrated by Dung Ho, it’s got colorful and vibrant illustrations throughout, making it a rich and immersive experience. Aimed at younger readers, it can also be read by older readers too, as it’s an accessible story with a lot to say.

Well written with a sense of poetry and sensitivity, this really brings its subject matter to life in a heartfelt manner. Really engaging and compelling in equal measure, the wonderful visuals also really work to make it a magical experience. Capturing the imagination of readers both young and old, this is story that will be picked up time and time again.

Realizing that her eyes are different from those of her peers, a young Asian girl notices they have large eyes with long lashes, while hers are different. Looking more like her grandmother’s, along with the rest of her family, including her little sister’s, at they seem to kiss at the corners. Inspired by the strength of the women in her family, she begins to see her own beauty, finding confidence and self-worth. Will she find her way in the world? Can she find self acceptance? What will become of the girl with the eyes that kiss in the corners?

Playing at the Border: A Story of Yo-Yo Ma

Initially published by HarperCollins again, this was also brought out in 2021 to much acclaim, as it would provide another illustrated book by Joanna Ho. Illustrated by Teresa Martínez, this would be a bright and colorful book once again, enjoyable for readers both young and old. Charting an account of the famous cellist Yo-Yo Ma, it’s a biographical non-fiction account of the musician’s life.

This is a beautifully told story of one of greatest musicians of the 20th century, providing a vivid portrayal of him and his life. Standing as testament to the man and the obstacles he’s had to face, it’s a sensitive account of everything that he is. Looking at his music, it’s an easy book to pick up, with plenty for the reader to invest themselves in, learning more about the musician.

Featuring the story of the famous cellist Yo-Yo Ma, this book looks at his life, seeing who he is and where he’s come from. Immigrating to the United States, he was a child prodigy with a huge gift for music, playing Bach’s cello suites at just four years of age. Stopped at various different borders around the world, he would play his music, all the while building bridges and bonds. This would lead him to the man he is today, as this book charts his development as an artist and musician of much renown.

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