Eva Chen Hopes to Inspire Self-Love in Asian American Children in New Picture Book I Am Golden

·2 min read

Edward Berthelot/Getty Images

Eva Chen knows what it's like to feel like an outsider.

The New York Times best-selling author, 41, tells PEOPLE that she "never saw books that reflected my experience" growing up — something that she deeply wanted to change.

Now, the mom of two — soon-to-be mom of three — hopes to add her own story to children's bookshelves with her new picture book, I Am Golden, on sale Jan. 11, 2022.

I Am Golden, illustrated by Sophie Diao, is an uplifting story that seeks to teach Asian American children about self-love and validation. The book will also include a special author's note, featuring Chen's own family photos, as well as a list of resources for Asian American advocacy.

Never miss a story — sign up for PEOPLE's free daily newsletter to stay up-to-date on the best of what PEOPLE has to offer, from juicy celebrity news to compelling human interest stories.

Illustration by Sophie Diao

RELATED: Mina Starsiak Hawk's New Children's Book Is All About 'Non-Traditional' Families

"I'm a first-generation American, who grew up often feeling like I existed in the in-between of American and Chinese culture. I wrote this book, as a Chinese-American mother, to share my experience and to hope that future generations can see themselves reflected in these pages," Chen tells PEOPLE.

The New York City native describes I Am Golden as an "ode to Asian joy and family ties — and finding beauty in yourself, even when you feel like you are different."

Chen explains that given the nation's current events and rise in anti-Asian hate crimes, the book's message is more important than ever.

"I hope this book is used as a teaching tool for families, students and teachers to see that we all have inner beauty and strength in volumes we don't realize," she adds.

This content is not available due to your privacy preferences.
Update your settings here to see it.

Chen previously worked as the editor-in-chief at Lucky and is currently the head of fashion partnerships at Instagram.

Along with I Am Golden, Chen is the New York Times best-selling author of eight children's books, including Juno Valentine and the Magical Shoes, A Is for Awesome! and Roxy the Last Unisaurus Rex.

I Am Golden will hit bookshelves on Jan. 11, 2022.