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We Were Dreamers: An Immigrant Superhero Origin Story

de Simu Liu

MembresRessenyesPopularitatValoració mitjanaMencions
22010125,315 (4.04)10
Biography & Autobiography. Performing Arts. Nonfiction. HTML:

INSTANT NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER

The star of Marvel's first Asian superhero film, Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings, tells his own origin story of being a Chinese immigrant, his battles with cultural stereotypes and his own identity, becoming a TV star, and landing the role of a lifetime.

In this honest, inspiring and relatable memoir, newly-minted superhero Simu Liu chronicles his family's journey from China to the bright lights of Hollywood with razor-sharp wit and humor.

Simu's parents left him in the care of his grandparents, then brought him to Canada when he was four. Life as a Canuck, however, is not all that it was cracked up to be; Simu's new guardians lack the gentle touch of his grandparents, resulting in harsh words and hurt feelings. His parents, on the other hand, find their new son emotionally distant and difficult to relate to - although they are related by blood, they are separated by culture, language, and values.

As Simu grows up, he plays the part of the pious child flawlessly - he gets straight A's, crushes national math competitions and makes his parents proud. But as time passes, he grows increasingly disillusioned with the path that has been laid out for him. Less than a year out of college, at the tender age of 22, his life hits rock bottom when he is laid off from his first job as an accountant. Left to his own devices, and with nothing left to lose, Simu embarks on a journey that will take him far outside of his comfort zone into the world of show business.

Through a swath of rejection and comical mishaps, Simu's determination to carve out a path for himself leads him to not only succeed as an actor, but also to open the door to reconciling with his parents.

We Were Dreamers is more than a celebrity memoir - it's a story about growing up between cultures, finding your family, and becoming the master of your own extraordinary circumstance.

.
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In his funny and relatable memoir, Simu Liu reflects on his bumpy road to success in the entertainment business and his difficult and sometimes toxic relationship with his parents. Liu, shares the challenges his parents faced growing up in communist China, emigrating to Canada and raising a son who straddled two cultures. Liu tackles difficult topics including parental neglect and anti-Asian discrimination with honesty and compassion. TW: contains descriptions of verbal & physical abuse. ( )
  StaffPicks | Nov 28, 2023 |
I fell in love with Simu Liu in "Kim's Convenience." I'm not a Marvel nerd so I haven't watched Shang-Chi. But with his boyish charm, Simu Liu captured my heart. So when I learned he had a memoir out, I wanted to read it.

Here's the thing. I don't think a 30 year old should necessarily be writing a memoir. You still have LOTS of life to live. BUT with the byline being an "origin" story, I truly got that. Simu didn't focus so much on the acting parts of his career; he focused more on the elements of his family and his culture that got him to becoming Marvel's first Asian superhero.

I'm curious what many will think while reading this book, especially those who have also immigrated the United States. I grew up here, I have white parents, I admittedly cannot relate to some of the things experienced. I also cannot relate to the HUGE pressure to perform, succeed, and be the absolute best that Simu did.....at the expense of his relationship with his mom and dad. However, I do think his experiences are very similar to others of Asian descent; I want to hear from them.

Simu could come off like an asshole. I mean, should all of those experiences and abuse have been documented? Especially since his family is, even now, evolving and getting better at exhibiting love and praise? That remains to be seen. However, I truly loved his insight into Simu's embracing of his culture. How he OWNS it and how he does not apologize for being an Asian American. I do think he will do big things in Hollywood.

I wanted Simu to go more in depth about Kim's Convenience--just because I loved the show AND I know he and the cast had struggles with Asian representation vs white production heads. I wanted to know more about Simu's amazing relationship with his grandparents (the ones who raised him for the first four years of his life. The ones who he felt truly loved him. The ones who apparently died while he was writing this book.) Hence why this book only gets a medium rating. But there is good. And I do recommend it. ( )
  msgabbythelibrarian | Jun 11, 2023 |
I’m a big fan of Kim’s Convenience, Ryan Reynolds blurbed it, and I teared up during the prologue so I was pretty sure this was going to be five stars. Heartbreaking, uplifting and funny. Representation matters, and Simu fought for it, for himself and for others who may now find the courage to explore a life different that what their parents expected of them.

Being the child of immigrant parents brings a whole set of expectations, That alone would be a lot to handle but add in being separated from his parent for the crucial first years, the impact of historical events in China on his parents, on the impact of Canada’s (and US’s) racism towards Chinese people, and on the film industries’ stereotypical portrayal of Asian people and you have significant barriers to overcome.

Here is the letter that started it all, https://www.macleans.ca/opinion/a-chinese-canadian-to-his-parents-privately-i-ye... ( )
  Lindsay_W | Mar 20, 2023 |
I'm not a Marvel fan, but I am a fan of Kim's Convenience. Liu's backstory is interesting. I enjoyed the book, but I also would have enjoyed understanding more about how he and his parents managed to repair their very broken relationship. ( )
  CarolHicksCase | Mar 12, 2023 |
We Were Dreamers: An Immigrant Superhero Origin Story

I Picked Up This Book Because: I love memoirs.

Media Type: Audiobook
Source: Library
Dates Read: 7/8/22 - 7/9/22
Stars: 4 Stars
Narrator(s): Simu Liu

Simu Liu seemingly came out of nowhere when Shang-Chi was released. Being someone who does not really follow the ins and outs of Hollywood I thought maybe he just wasn’t on my radar but after listening to his fascinating story I realized he really did come out of nowhere. After entering and leaving a completely different career Mr Liu was rather new to acting when he received this opportunity. Listening to him describe his upbringing in China then Canada I can’t think of someone whose life was so different yet we still experienced some of the same things growing up in the same time period… even if I am a bit older. This was a really interesting read. I felt it was open and honest and there were some heartbreaking moments but also moments of pure joy.

The Random Thoughts: ( )
  bookjunkie57 | Aug 4, 2022 |
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Biography & Autobiography. Performing Arts. Nonfiction. HTML:

INSTANT NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER

The star of Marvel's first Asian superhero film, Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings, tells his own origin story of being a Chinese immigrant, his battles with cultural stereotypes and his own identity, becoming a TV star, and landing the role of a lifetime.

In this honest, inspiring and relatable memoir, newly-minted superhero Simu Liu chronicles his family's journey from China to the bright lights of Hollywood with razor-sharp wit and humor.

Simu's parents left him in the care of his grandparents, then brought him to Canada when he was four. Life as a Canuck, however, is not all that it was cracked up to be; Simu's new guardians lack the gentle touch of his grandparents, resulting in harsh words and hurt feelings. His parents, on the other hand, find their new son emotionally distant and difficult to relate to - although they are related by blood, they are separated by culture, language, and values.

As Simu grows up, he plays the part of the pious child flawlessly - he gets straight A's, crushes national math competitions and makes his parents proud. But as time passes, he grows increasingly disillusioned with the path that has been laid out for him. Less than a year out of college, at the tender age of 22, his life hits rock bottom when he is laid off from his first job as an accountant. Left to his own devices, and with nothing left to lose, Simu embarks on a journey that will take him far outside of his comfort zone into the world of show business.

Through a swath of rejection and comical mishaps, Simu's determination to carve out a path for himself leads him to not only succeed as an actor, but also to open the door to reconciling with his parents.

We Were Dreamers is more than a celebrity memoir - it's a story about growing up between cultures, finding your family, and becoming the master of your own extraordinary circumstance.

.

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