Looking for great Asian fantasies by Asian and Asian American writers.

Hello lovely reader-people!

Gosh, it's been so long since I actually blogged about anything that I wasn't sure where to start. Then I remembered I needed your help.

As a lot of you know by now, City of a Thousand Dolls is a South-Asian based fantasy. And is plainly obvious from the picture on the sidebar, I'm not Asian. I'm about as white as you can get. The few hints of diversity in my background are overwhelmingly blotted out by my mixed-European heritage. Not only am I Caucasian by birth, I was also raised in one of the most homogeneous areas of the country, Eastern Washington/North Idaho.

Why am I telling you this? Well, because I did a guest post for YA Highway a few weeks ago about writing the non-western fantasy where I said this:

We need more non-western fantasy, and we need people who can write it with respect and understanding, to open the doors to still more diversity.

And someone on Twitter pointed out (not to me, I just happened to see it) that the way to encourage more diversity in fiction was to buy books written by POC writers. Which is completely true, and something I was sorry that I hadn't mentioned. (I've lost the original tweet so I cannot give credit for it, but if you're reading this, random person on Twitter, thank you.)

Now I would never tell you not to buy my book, because let's face it, I'd like to keep eating and to be able to write more books and sales are tremendously helpful with that. BUT I also know that there are a lot of great Asian fantasy novels out there that are truer and richer then mine could ever be precisely because they are written by people intimately familiar with the culture.

So I started thinking about ways I could help steer people to those books and decided one way to do it was to have a page on this blog dedicated to highlighting Asian fantasies by Asian and Asian American writers. So I took down my "Great Books" Page, and instead there's a page for Asian fantasy recommendations. There are already two books on it, the magic-fantastic Silver Phoenix by Cindy Pon and Prophecy by fellow debut-er Ellen Oh. But I need MORE.

So give me your recommendations, Interwebs. What are some wonderful adult, young adult and middle grade Asian-based fantasies that YOU know of?

17 comments:

  1. Where the Mountain Meets the Moon by Grace Lin! I was enchanted by this book! The author illustrated it herself, too, and it's beautiful.

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  2. "Where the Mountain Meets the Moon" by Grace Lin. I was enchanted with this fantastic book! The author also illustrated it herself, and it's beautiful. 

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  3. I haven't read them yet (they're on my shelf), but Kylie Chan has written trilogies base don Asian mythology. I think Chinese in particular. She's Australian, but lived in Hong Kong for quite some time.

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  4. Hmm... there's the Sano Icho Japanese historical mystery series by Laura Joh Rowland that I loved. Of course, that's adult not young adult.

    The only other Asian inspired book I've read is The Fox's Mask by Anna Frost, who's Canadian but I don't actually know her race or anything. That book is marked as GLBT, another minority group,  because it doesn't fit into heteronormality. I loved it and am working on writing the review for it now.

    Drat. That's all I've got and they fit one criteria or other but not all.  =/

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  5. Oh, Laura beat me to it! Yes, Where the Mountain Meets the Moon is lovely and kids adore it.

    Okay - I have not read his trilogy, and it sounds far more sci fi than fantasy, but a rep was absolutely raving about Isamu Fukui's Truancy series at the ALA this year (the first book he wrote when he was 15, too, darn him!). Also recommended them as good books for boys.

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  6. Starry River in the Sky, the follow-up to Where the Mountain Meets the Moon, is another good one. Malinda Lo's Huntress is also a fantastic one. 

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  7. Awesome. Got them! :)

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  8. Ooo, I'll look it up! Thanks Danika! 

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  9. I hadn't heard of either of those! Thank you, I'll look them up! 

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  10. SUCH a pretty book. Been in my TBR pile forever.

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  11. I'd recommend ASH and HUNTRESS by Malinda Lo. They're not "specifically" Asian, but the author is Asian-American, and writes some great fantasy. They are also LGBT books. 

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  12. I second this. The author is Asian American, the characters can be interpreted as Asian, and they double as LGBT books. They're also REALLY good.

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  13. Marie Lu's LEGEND and PRODIGY, the first two books of a dystopian trilogy. Author is Asian American and one of the main characters is mixed race in the book and Marie says she imagines him as being Central Asian/Mongolian descent. 

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  14. Ooooooh, so going to check those out myself. Thanks!

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  15. Total shameless self promotion my review is going up on the 22nd for The Fox's Mask, on my blog there's also going to be a guest post from Anna Frost. =)

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  16. Very good article thanks for sharing. http://www.siliconesexdollcity.com/

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