Throughout 2019 I’ve been participating in YARC – the year of the Asian reading challenge. (For a full explanation of YARC, go to my previous post.) I’ve read some incredible books by Asian authors, so I thought that I would list some of them for you today!
- Permanent Record by Mary H. K. Choi – This book is about Pablo, a 20 year-old who has dropped out of NYU and now works the graveyard shift at a bodega. He’s not sure what to do with his life – and that’s not helped when he meets Leanna, a famous pop star. This book talks a lot about student debt and depression. You can read my review here.
- My Brother’s Husband by Gengoroh Tagame – I absolutely loved this manga! It’s all about Mike, a widowed Canadian man, who has travelled to Japan to learn more about his partner’s past. It discusses homophobia in Japan, and how younger generations are learning more about queer relationships. I don’t often like kids in books, but the little girl in this one is such a sweetheart.
- There’s Something About Sweetie by Sandhya Menon – THIS BOOK, Y’ALL. It is about Sweetie, a track star who is fat. Throughout the book she falls in love, kicks off the Sassy Sweetie Project, and shows her parents that even though she’s fat, that literally doesn’t mean anything. I loved this book A LOT. You can read my review here.
- The Iron Will of Genie Lo by F. C. Yee – This might be cheating because I’m still in the middle of this book, but oh well! This book follows on from the 2017 novel The Epic Crush of Genie Lo. So far it is expanding upon the mythology introduced in the first book, and using it really well to develop Genie’s character further. It’s talked about complicated family dynamics, College (with a capital C) and the scariness of moving from high school to tertiary education. I’m really enjoying it so far!
- My Lesbian Experience with Loneliness by Kabi Nagata – Another manga, but this one is nonfiction! It’s about Kabi’s exploration of her sexuality, which she does by hiring a sex worker. To be honest, it’s more about the mental health aspects of having to hide her sexuality, and it frankly discusses depression, eating disorders, and self-harm. I found it a fascinating read.
I don’t know if I’ll be able to read all 5 of these books before the end of the year, but I would love to read:
- The Unlikely Adventures of the Shergill Sisters
- Patron Saints of Nothing
- Frankly In Love
- The Million Pieces of Neena Gill
Have you been participating in YARC? What’s been your favourite book so far this year? Let me know!