I’m so excited for this because I have so so many books that are perfect for this readathon! Asian Readathon runs the entire month of May and is dedicated to reading books written by Asian authors, and books that celebrate Asian characters. You can find the announcement here, and the official Twitter page here, and finally you can find a master list of books by Asian authors here.
The Challenges are as follows:
- Read any book by an Asian author.
- Read a graphic novel featuring an Asian character or written/drawn by an Asian author (manga, manhua, manhwa, and comics count).
- Read a book featuring an intersectional Asian character or written by an intersectional Asian identity (i.e. queer, mixed, disabled, neurodiverse, etc).
- Read a book by Asian author that was originally written in their native language (translated books and graphic novels count).
- Read the group book: A Thousand Beginnings and Endings by Ellen Oh, which will be covered in the live show on Saturday, May 25 at 6pm EST on readwithcindy’s channel.
- You can combine challenges and read in any order; however, EACH book you read should feature a character or author of a different Asian ethnicity. This is to encourage cultural diversity.
Vietnamese: Forest of a Thousand Lanterns by Julie C. Dao🇻🇳
This is a retelling of the rise of the evil queen from Cinderella in an Asian setting. I like villain backstories, so I’m excited to read this.
Chinese: Want by Cindy Pon🇨🇳
Set in future Taipei, this is the story of a group of friends fighting corruption in a world destroyed by pollution.
Chinese: Descendant of the Crane by Joan He🇨🇳
Set in a Chinese inspired world, Descendant of the Crane is full of twisty court politics, but at its core it is a murder mystery, and about a daughter trying to find her father’s killer.
Chinese: The Poppy War by R. F. Kuang🇨🇳
I DNF’d this book last year, but decided to give it another go after reading a blog post by the author. It’s based on the events of the Second Sino-Japanese War and the Nanjing Massacre, told in a fantasy setting.
Filipino: The Shadowglass by Rin Chupeco🇵🇭
The third and final instalment of The Bone Witch series, The Shadow Glass continues Tea’s story. Full of vengeance and magic and monsters, this series is quickly becoming one of my favourites. I’m almost scared to find out how it ends.
Indian: Markswoman by Rati Mehrotra🇮🇳
Markswoman is basically about an elite warrior in the Order of Kali who pledges to protect the people of Asiana, but is torn by her desire to avenge her murdered family.
Indian: A Spark of White Fire by Sangu Mandanna🇮🇳
This is pegged as an outer space retelling of the Maharabhata. What’s not to love?
Indian: Empire of Sand by Tasha Suri🇮🇳
This is a Mughal India inspired fantasy featuring a nobleman’s daughter in whose blood flows the magic of the nomadic Amrithi people. When her powers draw the attention of the Emperor’s mystics, she must resist their cruel plan, or risk waking vengeful gods.
Pakistani: A Reaper at the Gates by Sabaa Tahir🇵🇰
The third in the Ember in the Ashes series, I’ve been avoiding this book for well over six months. I was trying to wait for the final book to come out before reading it, but I don’t think I can wait any longer.
Pakistani: Unmarriageable by Soniah Kamal 🇵🇰
This is a Pride and Prejudice retelling in Pakistan. Enough said.
Singaporean: The Black Tides of Heaven by J.Y. Yang🇸🇬
This has rebellion, prophecy and siblings choosing different paths that take them further away from each other.
Japanese: The Guest Cat by Takashi Hiraide🇯🇵
This is a pretty slim novel which I’d probably describe as a slice-of-life meditation on the transient nature of life featuring a young couple, their neighbours, and a stray cat.
Japanese: Kojiki by Keith Yatsuhashi 🇯🇵
Kojiki is set in modern Japan, but explores the unseen world of spirits and monsters.
Korean: Conservation of Shadows by Yoon Ha Lee🇰🇷
Conservation of Shadows is a collection of short stories blending mythology and futuristic technology. Apparently it explores themes ranging from colonisation to the role of art to suicide.