Galang’s writing explores the experiences of Filipino immigrants and first-generation Filipino Americans.
Her most recent book, Lolas’ House, tells the stories of sixteen surviving Filipino “comfort women.” During World War II more than 1,000 Filipino women and girls were kidnapped by the Imperial Japanese Army. They were taken from their homes, snatched from roadsides, and chased down in fields and forced into sexual slavery.
Currently she is working on a new novel, Beautiful Sorrow, Beautiful Sky and When the Hibiscus Falls, a collection of stories.
Her Wild American Self, written as Galang’s MFA thesis, was published to acclaim in 1996. The New York Times Book Review praised the story collection for its “elegant, mesmerizing style,” and said, “the brief, chant like monologues that frame the collection are as lyrical as prayers.” It was named a Times Notable Book.
In 2003 Galang edited Screaming Monkeys: A Critique of Asian American Images, an anthology of essays, poetry, illustrations, advertising, and pictures. It won ForeWord Magazine’s Gold Book of the Year Award for 2003, as well as the Gustavus Meyers Outstanding Book Award in the Advancement of Human Rights for 2003.
One Tribe, Galang’s first novel, won the AWP Series for the Novel Award in 2004, while still in manuscript. Set in the Filipino-American community of Norfolk, Va., it was published by New Issues Press in 2006. It won the 2007 Global Filipino Literary Award for Fiction.
Galang’s second novel, Angel de la Luna and the 5th Glorious Mystery (2013), marketed to Young Adult readers, was nominated for the 2014 Teen Choice Award, named a Young People Against the World book recommendation by the Northwest Asian Weekly, and it was selected for the American Library Association’s Amelia Bloomer Project Recommended Feminist Literature List `from Birth through 18.