The AAPI community is a diverse and colorful tapestry of unique cultures spanning from China to Hawaii, India to Samoa, and more. This Asian Pacific American Heritage Month (and all year round), we celebrate the many stories within the AAPI community with authors of Asian and Pacific Islander heritage who weave their cultures into their work.
At Nymeria, we’re all about celebrating and uplifting the voices who are often overlooked. Whether it’s a magical fantasy set in a far off place or masterful poetry grounded firmly in family history, AAPI authors are some of the world’s best storytellers and bring light to lived experiences that are far-too-often forgotten.
In honor of AAPI Heritage Month, we’ve put together a list of some of our favorite AAPI authors who are expanding our minds and our hearts through their writing. Check out our picks below and let us know your favorites on Facebook and Instagram!
Celeste Ng, Little Fires Everywhere
Transporting readers to Shaker Heights, a Midwestern suburb, Ng tells the story of two mothers whose lives are changed forever when their paths cross. Themes of class, community, the consequences of our pasts, and the meaning of motherhood lie at the heart of this captivating breakout novel.
Kevin Kwan, Crazy Rich Asians
It’s fun, it’s raucous, and it’s, well, crazy. Kwan’s book that inspired the hit film tells a story of contemporary Asia, introducing readers to the wild and wealthy lives of its entertaining cast of characters. You won’t want to put this book down, and, lucky for you, there are two follow ups so you won’t be bored anytime soon.
Jenny Han, To All The Boys . . .
This YA series has blown up in the wake of the Netflix movies starring Lana Condor and Noan Centineo, but, as per usual, the books are definitely better (subtle wink). Following Lara Jean as she learns about love and heartbreak in high school, these novels are both sweet and approachable for readers of any age.
Jose Antonio Vargas, Dear America: Notes of an Undocumented Citizen
Penned by Pulitzer-winning journalist Jose Antonio Vargas, this non-fiction novel explores one of the most important and controversial topics of our time: immigration. Through deeply personal anecdotes and stories about what it’s like to try to become an American citizen, this book is ultimately a conversation about identity, home, and what happens when those things are put into question.
Amy Tan, The Joy Luck Club
One of the most recognizable books on our list, this novel follows four mothers, four daughters, and their families as they navigate life in American after immigrating to San Francisco from China. Over dim sum, mahjong, and moving conversations, these women share experiences of loss and hope, giving thoughtful insight into the AAPI experience.
Eric Nguyen, Things We Lost to the Water
It may be his debut novel, but Eric Nguyen’s work is a powerful piece of art. Things We Lost to the Water centers on an Vietnamese family who moves from Vietnam to New Orleans, tracking their trials and tribulations as they fight to remain connected as a unit.
Ali Wong, Dear Girls
You may know her from her television shows or stand-up specials, but Ali Wong pulls back the curtain on her own life in this funny and heart-warming memoir. Through letters to her daughters, she shares what she’s learned in life like the ups-and-downs of dating, how to be a woman in a male-dominated field, and more.