Hi friends, I hope everyone is having a wonderful Saturday! Just five minutes ago I discovered a ‘new’ meme on Leelynn’s blog and I’m so excited to take part in it. This Top 5 series was created by Mandy @ Devouring Books and it’s the Saturday meme I’ve been waiting for! The rules are simple:
- Share your top 5 books of the current topic– these can be books that you want to read, have read and loved, have read and hated – you can do it any way you want.
- Tag the original post
- Tag 5 people
I won’t be tagging five people but I do tag anyone who wants to participate! This week’s topic is: books with Asian settings. I love this prompt but I’m also a little embarrassed to admit that compared to all the other books I read, I actually haven’t read many with Asian settings… It’s not that I don’t want to or that I’m not interested, I actually have quite a few sitting on my shelves, I just don’t make a conscious effort to pick them up? (that probably sounds really bad lol) BUT this year I am making more of an effort to diversify my reads and that means giving high priority to the Asian books on my shelf! For now, here are the books I’ve read and loved with Asian settings:
The Kite Runner by Khaled Hosseini
One of the best books I’ve read. It’s heartbreaking but hopeful. It’s about family, friendship, and especially forgiveness. I learned so much about the culture and norms in Afghanistan. It’s not an easy read, but it’s a good one! It’s one of my all time favorites.
Pachinko by Min Jin Lee
This was one of my favorite books last year. I was really surprised by it because I had never heard of the author before and I didn’t really know what to expect. It’s a family saga set in Korea and Japan, and I learned so much about the relationship between the two countries through this book than I ever have anywhere else. It’s so good.
The Astonishing Color of After by Emily X.R. Pan
I read this earlier this year and it broke my heart. While some of it is set in the US, the majority of it is set in Taiwan. Pan’s writing makes it easy to imagine yourself standing in the sweltering humidity of a bustling city. Plus, the food (omg the food) and the culture is so richly illustrated and adds a great deal to the atmosphere of the novel.
Monstress Series by Marjorie M. Liu
Yes I did include a graphic novel on this list. This book is set in a steampunk matriarchal Asian society in the 1900s. It has some of the craziest and darkest world building I’ve ever seen and while some of it, especially the art work, is creepy AF, it’s just so freaking cool! Since the content is pretty dark I wouldn’t say it’s for everyone but if you’re at all curious and want to appreciate stunning art work, pick this up!
Shantaram by Gregory David Roberts
This was one of the books that I read at uni and I remember falling deep into it. It follows the story of an escaped Australian convict that tries to disappear on the streets of Bombay (modern day Mumbai), and we follow him as he teaches in the slums, appeases the mafia, falls in love with Bombay, bollywood and an enchanting woman. It’s written so vividly that you fell yourself being pulled into the gritty streets of Bombay, and then you surprise yourself by finding that you don’t want to leave. Although it’s really long, it’s worth it.
Do you have any favorite books with Asian settings?
Let me know in the comments and let’s chat!