They Called Us Exceptional: And Other Lies That Raised Us

This article They Called Us Exceptional: And Other Lies That Raised Us is derived from Why You Should Read Biography Books? Best Books 2023

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“They Called Us Exceptional: And Other Lies That Raised Us”

They Called Us Exceptional: And Other Lies That Raised Us

Author: Prachi Gupta

Rating: 4.43

Number of Ratings: 192

Number of Reviews: 50

In the book “They Called Us Exceptional,” Prachi Gupta tells us about her life as an Indian American. This special book talks about who she is, her family, and the pressure to be a certain way because of a harmful idea called the “model minority” myth. It’s a story that will touch your heart and make you think.

What’s the Book About?

Prachi Gupta’s family was like a picture of the American dream. They had a doctor dad and a caring mom, and they were living in two worlds – one in the Indian American community and another in a white suburban place in Pennsylvania. They looked like the perfect example of Asian Americans who were really good at living a comfortable life and seemed like they could handle anything life threw at them.

But there was a secret price behind this perfect image. Gupta shares how she felt all mixed up inside, embarrassed, and alone. Everyone thought she was super successful in America, but inside, she was dealing with hidden hurts that no one could see.

In the book, Gupta talks to her mom a lot. She tells her own story, mixing it with history, a fancy idea called “postcolonial theory,” and stuff about how our minds work. She explains how she started to understand her own life better and, by doing that, she set herself free from a big, simple idea that used to control her.

But when Gupta freed herself from these expectations, it also pushed her away from the people she cared about the most. Her memoir shows us how her family slowly fell apart, but she never gave up on making things better. She wants us to understand that the usual ideas about being successful can make us feel distant from ourselves and others. She believes we should focus more on being kind and understanding instead of always trying to fit in.


  • Memoir
  • Nonfiction
  • Race
  • Biography Memoir
  • Biography
  • India
  • Mental Health

Additional Information:

  • Pages: 288
  • First Published: August 22, 2023
  • Edition: Hardcover
  • ISBN: 9780593442982
About the Author:

Prachi Gupta is a journalist who’s won awards for her writing. She used to work for a magazine called Jezebel. One of her essays, “Stories About My Brother,” even got a Writers Guild Award. Her writing has been in famous places like The Atlantic, The Washington Post Magazine, Marie Claire, Salon, and Elle. Right now, she lives in New York City. In her memoir, she talks about important things like who we are, our families, and how we figure out who we really are. It’s a story that’s worth reading!

“They Called Us Exceptional” is a compelling narrative that encourages us to reflect on our own journeys and the stories we tell ourselves about who we are meant to be.


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