• Karis Rogerson

Awesome #AAPI Authored Books I Can't Wait to Read

In honor of May, which is Asian American and Pacific Islander Heritage Month, I wanted to highlight some books by Asian American or Pacific Islander authors that I'm anticipating so highly. If you'd like to know about a recent book by an Asian American author that I absolutely adored, check out my review of Counting Down with You by Tashie Bhuiyan. It's just one of the many books by AAPI that have come out lately that I've adored, and it's such a new release I'm still trying to get everyone to read it :)


So without further ado, the books I'm looking forward to! This list is non-exhaustive, of course, because there are so many more books than I can even list or even know about. Also many of these books have already been released, I just haven't gotten to them yet!


A Taste for Love by Jennifer Yen


A Taste for Love is a book I've been anticipating so much that I needed try my hand at interviewing Jennifer Yen for We Need Diverse Books.


Everything about it, from the cover to its description, which indicates there's a baking competition-turned competition for the heart of the main character, grabbed my attention and made me want to gobble this up, and the only reason I haven't is because my bookshelves are already buckling under the weight of my TBR (to-be-read) list.


But the fact that it's described as Pride & Prejudice meets the Great British Baking Show?


Sign me up.


A Taste for Love released on Feb. 1, 2021, and is available for purchase wherever books are sold.


Little Fires Everywhere by Celeste Ng

I feel like I hardly need to introduce this novel — it's been around since Sept. 12, 2017, and has even been made into a drama on Hulu.


But I'm going to write a little about it anyway. I've had this book since 2018, and haven't read it yet because I'm trash, but it tells the story of a quiet community outside of Cleveland, OH, which gets shaken up entirely by new arrivals and a custody battle for an adoption.


That's really all I know about it. I've read the synopsis multiple times but really I'm just intrigued by this story of clashing worlds and world views, and want to dive in and immerse myself in this award-winning work.


Eventually I also want to watch the TV show, but my priority right now is the book :)


Island of Shattered Dreams by Chantal T. Spitz


This one just recently crossed my radar, and it's not the type of book I'm normally drawn to (aka it's not YA contemporary), but it sounds really incredible.


I'm just going to drop the Goodreads description below because it's concise and says things very well!


Finally in English, Island of Shattered Dreams is the first ever novel by an indigenous Tahitian writer. In a lyrical and immensely moving style, this book combines a family saga and a doomed love story, set against the background of French Polynesia in the period leading up to the first nuclear tests. The text is highly critical of the French government, and as a result its publication in Tahiti was polarising.


This book was published Dec. 31, 2007, and so has been around for a while. I'm excited to add it to my list and give it a whirl, expanding my reading and branching out.


The author, Chantal T. Spitz, who's from French Polynesia, has also written poems and essays, and I'll hopefully be able to dive into some of those as well once I read Island of Shattered Dreams.


From Little Tokyo, With Love by Sarah Kuhn

Something about this book just absolutely grasped my attention from the moment I first heard about it. Or maybe it was the moment I first saw it, because I discovered it through a cover reveal and was immediately oh-so-obsessed.


Seriously, look at that cover. It's absolutely breathtaking. I want it!


According to Goodreads, the book "reinvents the modern fairy tale," and is the story of Rika, who believes that "happy endings don't happen to girls like her."


Honestly I've had that thought about myself, too, so this sounds not just adorable but relatable, and I'm excited to hopefully get my own copy soon and dive in.


This is just the faintest of smatterings of books that I'm excited for — there are others, by authors I've already read and loved (looking at you, On this Unworthy Scaffold by Heidi Heilig, which just released, and Loveboat, Taipei by Abigail Hing Wen, from last year).


This list is short, because there is no one blog post that I could make that will contain the vast multitudes of the brilliance that is AAPI literature. But I did want to celebrate just a few stories.


What are some stories by AAPI authors that you've read and loved? Share in the comments!

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