10 Romance Books by Asian Authors

Hi everyone! I think it’s pretty obvious for anyone that follows this blog that I read a lot of romance books, I’m a huge fan of the genre and I have been reading it for years. As I have mentioned before, it took me a long time to realize that I was only reading romance books by white authors and while I love a lot of those stories, I’m commited to reading diversely and that’s why in the last couple of years I have been trying to read more romance books by women of color.

Since May is Asian American and Pacific Islander Heritage Month and since I have read quite a few romance books by Asian authors, I thought it was a good idea to share some of my favorite ones with you. I have done this before with romance books by Latinx authors & romance books by Black authors, so check those posts out, if you want some recommendations!

*You can click the book titles throughout the post to go to the Goodreads page*

The Modern Love Series + A Gentleman in the Street by Alisha Rai

The Modern Love series addresses the role that social media plays in romantic relationships in today’s society, while centering diverse characters and sensitive subjects. The interesting concept, the great writing and the diversity are definitely the main reasons I like this series. While I enjoyed the second book a lot more than the first, I still think both are worth the read.

The first book, The Right Swipe, revolves around two rival dating app creators who find themselves at odds in the boardroom but in sync in the bedroom. This book has a Black heroine and a Samoan hero. The second book, Girl Gone Viral, is about a tweet that goes viral and shoves a camera-shy ex-model into the spotlight and into the arms of the bodyguard she has been pining for. This book includes a thai-american plus sized heroine with anxiety and an Sikh hero dealing with his PTSD.

Now when it comes to A Gentleman in the Street, my favorite thing about it is how sex positive and feminist it is, and the fact that it is incredibly steamy doesn’t hurt either. This book is about a man and a woman who have known each other for years and have been pretending they don’t like each other, but a single touch is all it takes for their simmering need to explode. This book includes a Japanese heroine.

Graham Delicacies + Soft on Soft by Mina Waheed

These two books where first release by the author Em Ali, but due to personal reasons they were released again under the pseudonym Mina Waheed. These books are fluffy, soft and angst-free romances, which is the main reasons I recommend them. If you are looking for cure, light queer romances these ones are for you!

Soft on Soft is a novella about a makeup artist that falls in love with a famous model. Both of the main characters in this book are queer, fat, women of color. This book doesn’t include sexually explicit content.

Graham’s Delicacies is a collection of three queer love stories set in one bakery. It includes a romance between a woman and a non-binry character, an m/m romance and a romance between a man and a non binary character.

If The Dress Fits by Carla de Guzman

There was a time when I would not shut up about this book, I love this and I need to re-read it soon. If the Dress Fits is set in the Philippines and it has an entire cast of Filipino characters. The main character is fat and and she has a very positive relationship with her weight. This is a best friends to lovers romance and it also inlcudes the fake dating trope, which it’s the best combination of tropes in my opinion.

A swoon-worthy romance with my favorite tropes, an insightful and vibrant depiction of the Philippines and fantastic #ownvoices representation are my favorite things about this book and the reasons I recommend it.

The Kiss Quotient Series by Helen Hoang

I’m a huge fan of The Kiss Quotient, I even got my IRL friends to read it and they loved it too. While I didn’t enjoy the second book quite as much, I still liked it. The diversity, the writing, the cute and steamy romances are the reasons I recommend this series.

The Kiss Quotient is about an Autistic woman who hires a male escort to teach her about sex and they end up falling in love. This book includes a very soft Vietnamese/Swedish hero, a successful and caring heroine and very steamy scenes! The Autistic rep is #ownvoices.

The Test Bride is about an Autistic man, whose mother wants to see married but thinks it won’t happen without her help, so she gets a mail-order bride from Vietnam and the son and the woman fall in love. This book inlcudes #ownvoices Vietnamese and Autistic rep.

Beginner’s Guide + Feels like Summer by Six de los Reyes

Both of theses books are set in the Philippines and they have a cast of Filipino characters. The representation is #ownvoices.

Beginner’s Guide is about a woman who is a scientist and who creates a methodology to find her perfect partner and she decides to test it with the most  unsuitable candidate and ends up falling for him. If you like romances where opposites attract and where people fall in love with someone that they didn’t expect, I would recommend this one!

Feels like Summer is about a woman who doesn’t want a relationship and a man who’s getting over a breakup, so they decide to casually date for 3 months and be done, but things change along the way. If you like romances with soft heroes and a great group of friends, I think you would enjoy this book.

What romance books by Asian authors would you recommend? Have you read any of the books I mentioned? Do you want to read any of them?

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10 Cities that Books Made Me Want to Visit | Top Ten Tuesday

Cities that Books Made Me Want to Visit

Hi everyone! When I started blogging I participated in Top Ten Tuesday regulary and I loved the fact that it allowed me to interact with so many people from the community, because I miss that, I decided to start participating again!

Top Ten Tuesday was created by The Broke and the Bookish in June of 2010 and was moved to That Artsy Reader Girl in January of 2018!

Today, the topic is places mentioned in books that I’d like to visit, so I decided to write about 10 cities that are the setting of some amazing books and that play such an important role in the story that after reading the books I can’t help but want to go visit them myself.

*If you click the title of the books, it will take you to the Goodreads page for the book

Without further ado, here are the 10 cities that books made me want to visit:

If The Dress Fits by Carla de Guzman-—> Manila, Philippines

Honestly, all the #romanceclass books I have read made me want to visit the Philippines, but If the Dress Fits is my favorite #romanceclass book and it’s the one that mentions more especific places from Manila like the Dangwa flower market and the Manila Metropolitan Theatre, as well as different types of food that sounded delicious.

The Astonishing Color of After by Emily X.R. Pan —–> Taipei, Taiwan

I really want to go to Taipei, and especifically, the food markets that are constantly mentioned in this book, I’m just so excited to try delicious food! Also, the observatory inside Taipei 101 sounds so cool, I really want to see the city from that height.

Darius the Great is not Okay by Adib Khorram —-> Yazd, Iran

Iran is the most recent addition to this list, I read Darius the Great is not Okay in January and I fell in love with the way Darius talked about Iran.  I would love to go to Yazd and see the Jameh Mosque, the Towers of Silence and the Atashkadeh.

Crazy Rich Asians by Kevin Kwan —-> Singapore

While reading Crazy Rich Asians, I couldn’t help but be incredibly intrigued about Singapore. I can’t wait to visit the food markets and the impressive buildings, especially the Marina Bay Sands and the gardens by the bay.

The Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants by Ann Brashares —-> Santorini, Greece

I’ll confess that my desire to visit Greece is due to the Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants books and the movie, as well as to the Mamma Mia movies. But, even if the Mamma Mia made me want to go to Greece even more, it all started with Lena and her trip to Santorini in the first book of the series.

City of Ghost by Victoria Shwab —-> Edinburg, Scotland

There are so many European cities that I want to see and to be completely honest, Edinburgh wasn’t one of them until recently when I read City of Ghost. Now I can’t wait to go to the Edinburgh Castle, the Royal Mile and the Edinburgh Vaults! Also, I’m so excited by the fact that book 2 is taking place in Paris and especifically in The Paris Catacombs, which I have been to.

Long Way Down by Krista & Becca Ritchie —-> Costa Rica

Ryke and Daisy are my favorite couple in this series and they talk so many times about Costa Rica that it put this country at the top of my list. I’m not sure which city or region they were in, but I would love to go to Cahuita, which is supposed to be a place to relax and find peace.

The Way You Make Me Feel by Maurene Goo – Los Angeles

I have wanted to go to L.A. for as long as I can remember, but the last few years, it had been slipping further and further donw the list of places I wanted to visit, until I read this book and it made me want  to go to L.A. so badly! As I said on my review this is a love letter to Los Angeles, there’s commentary on different neighborhoods, who primarily lives there, what type of activities are done and what types of food are sold in them. It simply made me feel excited about going to L.A. again.

Like Us  Series by Krista & Becca Ritchie – Philadelphia 

I already was interested in going to Philadelphia thanks to the original Addicted/Calloway Sister series, but if I’m being honest, the Like us series was the one that really made me want to go to Philly. It’s just that the bodyguards talk about their city with so much love that I can’t help but being curious!

Knitting in the City Series by Penny Reid – Chicago, United States

I loved this series, I have already read like 10 books in this series between novels and novellas and I have spent so much time with the ladies of this knitting group that I can’t help but want to visit their city!

Daughter of Smoke and Bone by Laini Taylor – Prague, Czech Republic

I had never thought about visiting Prague before this book, but then I read this and soon after I met a dear friend who is from Czech Republic and so I knew the universe was telling me that I needed to visit this beautiful city. It’s being almost five years and I’m happy to say that I’m visiting my friend in April in Prague and I’m so excited!

What books do you want to visit because of a book or series? HAve you ever visited a city because I book was set in it? 
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9 Books with Asian Main Characters

9 books asian

9 Books Monday is a feature that I used to have here on the blog, where I would talk about 9 books that have positive representation for a minority/marginalized group. It’s a weekly feature that I’m excited to bring back. In the past, I have done posts about 9 book with: bisexual female main characters, latinx mc, black mc, muslim mc and lesbian mc.

This time I’m doing 9 books with Asian main characters written by asian authors.

3 Books I Read and Loved  

 If The Dress Fits by Carla de Guzman

I talk about this book A LOT, but it’s such a cute book and I feel like people would love it if they gave it a chance.  This is an #ownvoices book about a fat filipino main character. It has friends to lovers, fake dating, incredible family dynamics and insightful depiction of the Philippines. You can read my full review and you can see the Bookish Style Guide I did based on the main character Martha Aguas.

The Way You Make Me Feel by Maurene Goo

This book was released recently and I really enjoyed it!  Amazing food description + wonderful female freindship + strong character development+ cute romance+ incredible father/daughter relationship= an adorable, fun and compelling read. The main character is Korean american and her dad has a food truck that sells fusion, a mix between korean and brazilian food. 

When Dimple Met Rishi by Sandhya Menon

Indian main characters + arranged marriage in a contemporary setting + summer program for web developers + adorable romance + incorporation of indian culture (language, customs, movies, food) = one of the cutest books ever and also a really interesting one. Also, #ownvoices for the indian representation. 

4 Books on my TBR

Girls Burn Brighter by Shobha Rao

Part of this book is set in India, the main characters are from India, and the author of the book is also from India, which is why I’m trusting the representation in this is gonna be amazing.  The main characters of this book are two girls and this story revolves around their friendship, while dealing with themes like domestic abuse, human trafficking, immigration, and feminism. I can’t wait to read this one, even if I have the suspision that it’s gonna break my heart.

Forest of a Thousand Lanterns by Julie C. Dao

This book is an East Asian fantasy reimagining of The Evil Queen legend from Snow White, it explores the origin story of this ‘evil’ character and I have heard that it has stunning writing, complex characters and it had a dark twist to it. I love books with morally gray characters and I’m looking forward to reading this one.

Want by Cindy Pon

This book is set in a futuristic Taipei that’s sucumbing to environmental problems. It deals with themes of  inequality, poverty and privilege. The main character of the book is Taiwanese and this is #ownvoices representation since Cindy Pon is also Taiwanese. There are chinese, filipino and indian characters as well, and there’s diversity in terms of sexuality too. This sounds so interesting and I have heard nothing but good things about it, so I’m excited to read it!

Beginner’s Guide: Love and Other Chemical Reactions by Six de los Reyes

This book is set in the Philippines, the main character is a scientist, who is trying to find love through a scientific methodology and ends up falling for the guy she less expected. I love stories where opposites attract and I’m looking forward to this one. Also, this is #ownvoices since the author is from the Philippines. I’m expecting this to be cute, funny and entertaining.

2 Books Releasing Soon 

Girls of Paper and Fire by Natasha Ngan

This is the story is set in an Asian-inspired fantasy world where a Demon King takes human girls for concubines, and it’s the story of two of the girls that fall in love and fight for their freedom and each other. The author had said that the kingdom in which this story takes place is heavily inspired by her experiences growing up in Malaysia. There’s a huge trigger warning for violent assault/rape, so I’m a bit scared that this is gonna be frustrating and devastating because of the  subject matter, but I’m still really excited to read it! Release date: November 6th 2018

Ignite the Stars by Maura Milan

It’s always amazing to see a POC in the cover of a book, but I’m particulary excited to see an Asian character in the cover of a sci-fi book. This is the story of a girl that is a criminal mastermind and unrivaled pilot, she has spent her life terrorizing the imperialist nation that destroyed her home and then she is captured, sent to a military academy and has to work for them. This sounds like something I  would really enjoy and I can’t wait to give it a chance!  Release date:  September 4th 2018

Have you read any of these books? did you enjoy them? Are you planning on reading any of them? Do you have recommendations for books with asian main characters?

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Underrated Diverse Romance Books (less than 200 ratings on Goodreads)

Underrated Diverse Romance Books

Recently, I discovered that some diverse romance books I really enjoyed have less than a 200 ratings on Goodreads. After realizing this, I felt like it was a good idea to promote these amazing books that a lot of people may have not read. I didn’t choose books released in 2018, because I feel like they haven’t been out for very long and that may have to do with why they don’t have that many ratings.

A few weeks ago, I did a post about Underrated YA Books (less than 1000 rating on Goodreads)  in case you want to check it out! Now I wanted to make a list of diverse romance books with less than a 200 ratings on Goodreads that I think deserve more attention and love from the reading community:

 

If The Dress Fits by Carla de Guzman (2016) – 156 ratings on Goodreads

if-the-dress-fits

Martha Aguas kind of has it all–she’s an accountant who loves numbers, an accident-prone puppy that loves her, and the perfect wardrobe. Yes, she wears a dress size 24, her bras don’t fit and she’s never had a boyfriend, but so what? 

It becomes a big deal when her perfect cousin Regina announces her engagement to Enzo, the only boy she’s ever loved (he doesn’t know, so don’t tell him!) Suddenly Aguases from all corners of the globe are coming for the event, and the last thing Martha wants is to be asked why she still prefers her lattes with a waffle on the side. 

Thank god for Max. Goofy, funny, dependable Max, who finds himself playing the fake boyfriend at the family festivities. But why does it feel like only one of them is pretending?

Goodreads | Amazon 

If you want am #ownvoices book about a fat filipina main character with a really cute best friends to lovers romance, that stars with fake dating and that has incredible family dynamic and insightful depiction of the Philippines, this book is for you! It’s a funny and adorable read. You can read my full review and you can see the Bookish Style Guide I did based on the main character Martha Aguas.

 

North to You by Tif Marcelo (2017) – 165 ratings on Goodreads 

North to youCamille Marino has got a full plate. As the sole guardian of her eighteen-year-old sister and the head chef and owner of a food truck, she’s used to life being a juggling act. With food to cook, social media accounts to manage, and a little sister to look after, she doesn’t have time for much else. That is, until Drew Bautista walks back into her life.

Drew is Camille’s former high school crush and he returns to San Francisco to repair his relationship with his father before he ships out for deployment. By helping his father renovate his failing Filipino restaurant, he hopes to win back his respect. But when sparks fly between Drew and Camille—his father’s major competition and sworn enemy—Drew is conflicted. Should he join his father in the war against her food truck? Or surrender to the woman who’s given him a second chance at love?

Goodreads | Amazon

If you are looking for a book with  likeble main characters, a soft hero, a second chance romance and an interesting storyline revolving around food, this may be the book for you!  Also, I would like to mention that the male main characters is filipino and there’s a lot of reference to Filipino food.

The Story of Lizzy and Darcy by Grace Watson (2017) – 90 ratings on Goodreads

The Story of Lizzie and Darcy

 

When Lizzy Bennet first meets Darcy Williams, there is an instant dislike between them. As much as they try to avoid it their paths keep crossing, and they each start to see a different side to the other. Their tentative friendship is soon tested, but will they realise how they really feel?

The Story of Lizzy and Darcy is a modern day, same-sex adaptation of Jane Austen’s Pride and Prejudice.

Goodreads | Amazon

If you would like to read a Pride & Prejudice retelling, where a lesbian and a bisexual woman that have tons of chemestry fall in love, all while working in the book publishing industry, this book is for you! Also, there’s a trans character in this book that has a big role in the story.

 

Better at Weddings Than You by Mina V. Esguerra (2017) – 134 ratings on Goodreads 

Better at Weddings than you

Daphne Cardenas is the best wedding planner around, and everyone knows it. That’s why her friend Greg hired her as an emergency replacement one month before his wedding—because he fears his fiancée Helen is falling for the guy they first hired for the job. 

Aaron Trinidad is new to the wedding industry but years of conference planning and loads of charm make him good at it. Really good at it. Planning the wedding of his friend Helen should be easy, and it is. To be unceremoniously fired isn’t good for his new career, but the chance to learn from the best might be the silver lining.

Aaron and Daphne have chemistry, but there’s history with Helen that at least one other person considers a threat. Who’s the planner who can fix this impending disaster?

Goodreads | Amazon  

If you would like to read a book set in the Philippines, revolving around the wedding planning industry, with a romance between a female main character that has been planning weddings for years and a charming guy that’s a new comer into the wedding planning buisness, you may enjoy this book! Also, this is #ownvoices, written by a filipina author.

 

Do you want to read any of these books? Have you read any of these books? Did you like them?
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Martha Aguas Style Guide| If the Dress Fits by Carla de Guzman

2ed27-bookish2bstyle2bguide

When I first started my blog,  before I moved from blogger to wordpress, I had a feature called Bookish Style Guide,  where I shared Pinterst boards with clothes and accesories inspired by the style of the main character in a book. I only posted two of them:

Lara Jean Style Guide | To All The Boys I’ve Loved Before by Jenny Han

Blue Sargent Style Guide | The Raven Cycle by Maggie Stiefvater 

The boards were full of things that I thought the character would wear and they were SO FUN to make. So I decided to start doing them again and to start I chose Martha Aguas, the main character in If the Dress Fits by Carla de Guzman. It’s a book that I really enjoyed reading and Martha was a great character. Here’s my review of the book if you want to know more.

The Style Guide: 

I chose Martha Aguas as inspiration because in the book is pretty clear that she likes fashion, she likes clothes and she loves finding things that work for her. In the book, she wears skirts, heels, wide leg trousers and floral print.

“I learned to love dressing for my body, wearing heels and short skirts like i was nobody’s business” – If the Dress Fits

“I pulled out a pair of wide leg trousers … then a silk button down shirt  that was a men’s size XXL. I was sure it was gonna look fantastic with my favorite camel heels” – If the Dress Fits

“What was wrong with wearing a fitted t-shirt and big floral midi skirt?”  – If the Dress Fits

Here’s the board I made inspired by Martha (Unfortunately, you can’t see it on the wordpress reader, you have to go to the actual blog). If you click in the pictures most of them will take you to the store that sells the clothes (it’s not an ad). Also, I add to these boards from time to time, so if you would like to see more, you can follow the board on Pinterest.

More about the book: 

if-the-dress-fitsMartha Aguas kind of has it all–she’s an accountant who loves numbers, an accident-prone puppy that loves her, and the perfect wardrobe. Yes, she wears a dress size 24, her bras don’t fit and she’s never had a boyfriend, but so what? 

It becomes a big deal when her perfect cousin Regina announces her engagement to Enzo, the only boy she’s ever loved (he doesn’t know, so don’t tell him!) Suddenly Aguases from all corners of the globe are coming for the event, and the last thing Martha wants is to be asked why she still prefers her lattes with a waffle on the side. 

Thank god for Max. Goofy, funny, dependable Max, who finds himself playing the fake boyfriend at the family festivities. But why does it feel like only one of them is pretending? 

Goodreads| Amazon
Do you know a character from a book that has a very distinctive style? What books have characters that are interested in fashion? For what character would you like to see a style guide? 
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5 Most Surprising Books of 2017

5 most surprising books of 2017

I wanted to talk about some of the books that surprised me in 2017, because I didn’t know that much about them and ended up loving them or because I thought I wasn’t gonna like them and at the end I did. These books are books that I read in 2017 but they didn’t necesarily were released in 2017.

If the Dress Fits by Carla de Guzman 

I was not expecting to love this as much as I did, I had never read anything by this author and I had never read a book set in the Philippines, which made this even more surprising because I was discovering things about the culture that were new to me. There were 2 things I really loved about this: 1)  The main character, Martha, is plus sized and she has a positive relationship with her weight  and 2) There’s fake dating and the best friends to lovers trope in this story, which are my favorites. I want to re-read this soon!

How to Make a Wish by Ashley Herring Blake

This book suprised me because I recieved an ARC and when I read it not a lot of people had written reviews, so I didn’t know that much about it and that made me uncertain about reading it. Nonetheless, I found that this book has amazing representation, the main character Grace is bisexual and the love interest Eva is a biracial lesbian girl. Also, the romance in this book is great, Grace and Eva are so cute! and the story of Grace and her mom is raw and complicated and told with so much honesty.

Future Leaders of Nowhere by Emily O’Beirne

I received an ARC of this and I had never heard about it or about the author and  that’s why this book was such a big surprise. The premise sounded interesting and that’s why I read it, but I was still really amazed at how good this book was. I really loved a lot of things about this, but mainly: 1) There’s amazing representation: one of the main characters is bisexual and the other is Indian-Australian and a lesbian, and 2) The setting and premise are amazing, it’s a mix between a summer camp and a Model UN.

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Tower of Dawn by Sarah J Maas

This book was suprising because I thought I wasn’t gonna like it, so many of the main characters weren’t in it and Chaol is not my favorite so I was a bit worried. BUT I really liked the new characters. I loved the stoyline and the writing in this book.

Dating-ish by Penny Reid 

I think this is the fifth book in a series and I have liked all the other books, but the synopsis of this was not the best, so that made me doubt if I wanted to read this or not. Funny thing, I read it and it’s my favorite book of the series, which was totally surprising to me. I really liked the main characters and I really liked the relationship between them.

 

Tell me in the comments, what books surprised you in 2007? I would love to know! 

Diversity Spotlight Thursday #7

diverse-spotlight1

Diversity Spotlight Thrusday is a weekly meme hosted by Aimal from Bookshelves and Paperbacks. Every week, the participants are suppost to choose one book for each of the three categories: a diverse book you have read and enjoyed, a diverse book on your tbr, and a diverse book that has not yet been released. 

If you didn’t know, I also decided to pick  books that have  less than a thousand ratings on Goodreads, because I want to promote less known diverse books and authors, and I will try to choose only #ownvoices books, because I want the authors that I promote to be members of minorities and marginalized groups.

read

If the Dress Fits by Carla de Guzman 

if-the-dress-fitsMartha Aguas kind of has it all–she’s an accountant who loves numbers, an accident-prone puppy that loves her, and the perfect wardrobe. 

Yes, she wears a dress size 24, her bras don’t fit and she’s never had a boyfriend, but so what? 

It becomes a big deal when her perfect cousin Regina announces her engagement to Enzo, the only boy she’s ever loved (he doesn’t know, so don’t tell him!) Suddenly Aguases from all corners of the globe are coming for the event, and the last thing Martha wants is to be asked why she still prefers her lattes with a waffle on the side. 

Thank god for Max. Goofy, funny, dependable Max, who finds himself playing the fake boyfriend at the family festivities. But why does it feel like only one of them is pretending?

Goodreads

If the Dress Fits is an #ownvoices book, both the main character and the author are Filipinx and have an under represented body type. This book is a funny and cute romance story between Martha, a plus sized woman of color who has a positive relationship with her weight, and  Max, a biracial veterinarian, who loves to read, is really romantic and quotes books in random moments. I totally recommend it! Here’s my full review.

tbr

When Michael Met Mina by Randa Abdel-Fattah

When Michael Met Mina

When Michael meets Mina, they are at a rally for refugees – standing on opposite sides.

Mina fled Afghanistan with her mother via a refugee camp, a leaky boat and a detention centre.

Michael’s parents have founded a new political party called Aussie Values.

They want to stop the boats.
Mina wants to stop the hate.

When Mina wins a scholarship to Michael’s private school, their lives crash together blindingly.

Goodreads

This book has been on my tbr for a while, I found out about it when I was looking for books with Muslim main characters. The truth is that I haven’t read that many books with positive Muslim representation and I’m definitely interested in changing that. I have heard that When Michael Met Mina is a really political book that adresses racism and imigration and I think those are very important subjets right now. I can’t wait to read this!

coming-soon

I Am Not Your Perfect Mexican Daughter by Erika L. Sánchez 

I am not your perfect mexican daughter

Perfect Mexican daughters do not go away to college. And they do not move out of their parents’ house after high school graduation. Perfect Mexican daughters never abandon their family. But Julia is not your perfect Mexican daughter. That was Olga’s role.

Then a tragic accident on the busiest street in Chicago leaves Olga dead and Julia left behind to reassemble the shattered pieces of her family. And no one seems to acknowledge that Julia is broken, too. Instead, her mother seems to channel her grief into pointing out every possible way Julia has failed.

 

But it’s not long before Julia discovers that Olga might not have been as perfect as everyone thought. With the help of her best friend Lorena, and her first kiss, first love, first everything boyfriend Connor, Julia is determined to find out. Was Olga really what she seemed? Or was there more to her sister’s story? And either way, how can Julia even attempt to live up to a seemingly impossible ideal?

Goodreads

I’m latinx and I’m always looking for books with positive latinx representation, so off course I’m incredibly excited about I am not your perfect mexican daughter. I have heard nothing but great things about the representation in this book and I can’t wait to read it. The release date is October 17th 2017.

Have you read any of these? Did you like them? Can you recommend me some diverse books you love? 

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Book Review: If the Dress Fits by Carla de Guzman

if-the-dress-fits

Title: If the Dress Fits

Author: Carla de Guzman

Published by: Midnight Books

Publishing date:  October 15th 2016

Genre: Romance, new adult

Martha Aguas kind of has it all–she’s an accountant who loves numbers, an accident-prone puppy that loves her, and the perfect wardrobe. 

Yes, she wears a dress size 24, her bras don’t fit and she’s never had a boyfriend, but so what? 

It becomes a big deal when her perfect cousin Regina announces her engagement to Enzo, the only boy she’s ever loved (he doesn’t know, so don’t tell him!) Suddenly Aguases from all corners of the globe are coming for the event, and the last thing Martha wants is to be asked why she still prefers her lattes with a waffle on the side. 

Thank god for Max. Goofy, funny, dependable Max, who finds himself playing the fake boyfriend at the family festivities. But why does it feel like only one of them is pretending?

Goodreads| Amazon

I received this book through a giveaway hosted by the amazing Marianne @Boricuan Bookworms . Thank you so much for giving me the chance to read this book! 

If the Dress Fits is a funny and cute romance story. This is a #ownvoices book both for being overweight and being Filipinx. The main character, Martha, is plus sized woman of color and she has a positive relationship with her weight, which makes this story really valuable. The love interest is Max, a biracial veterinarian, who loves to read, is really romantic and quotes books in random moments. They are both interesting characters and it’s entertaining to read about them.

The romance in this book is on point, the relationship between Martha and Max is adorable. It’s easy to tell from the beginning that they care for each other and that they are really supportive of one another. Max sees through Martha and calls her out when she isn’t honest with herself. This book is a perfect example of fake dating and the best friends to lovers trope done right, they allow some emotional moments and makes this book really swoony.

One of the best parts of the book is that it’s set in the Philippines and it’s amazing to see the vibrant cultural represented, this book is fasicnating and insightful. There is also an incredible family dinamic in this book that is really amusing, all the family members –  the titas, the grandma, the dad, the sister and Regina- are interesting and captivating, even when they don’t show up so often. They can be annoying and make thoughtless comments at times, but there’s still a lot of love and support between them.

The only minor problem with this book is the Enzo storyline, he is a guy Martha went to university with and there’s history there and now he is marrying her cousin; all that storyline feels a bit unnecessary . It would have been amazing to read more about Max instead of all the parts about Enzo.

Rating: 4 stars

Are you excited to read this book? Have you read it already? Did you like it? 

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February 2017 Wrap Up

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I don’t know how but I managed to read 10 books in February, and ,what’s even more exciting, 9 of those books were diverse. This is gonna be a bit of a long post, so let’s talk about the books!

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God Smites and Other Muslim Girl Problems by Ishara Deen (4,2 stars) 

I recieved this book from the author and I’m extremely grateful to her. This is a funny, charming and interesting book. The main character, Asiya,has a unique voice that shines throughout the whole story. Also, the humour is absolutely brilliant and that comes from being honest and outspoken about things that are not often talked about in YA. Here’s my review.

Stalking Jack the Ripper by Kerri Maniscalco (4,2 stars) 

I recieved this book when it first came out and I’m ashamed to say I didn’t read it until recently. This book is atmospheric, it has a creepy vibe that captures the attention of the reader, while also having amazing main characters that are intelligent, funny and complex. The only flaw is that it’s easy to guess who Jack the Ripper is.

The Skating Rink by Roberto Bolaño (3,2 stars)

I read this in my purse of reading more Latin American authors, my boyfriend and one of my best friends love Roberto Bolaño and that’s why I ended up reading his book. The story is told from the perspective of 3 men, it’s an internal monologue of what they think and how they see women in their lives and it isn’t entertaining or insightful. By the end of the book, the reader doesn’t have an idea of who these women actually are, only the ideas these men create about them. Also, this is a mystety and it becomes really predictable after halfway through the book. The one great thing about this book is the writing. Roberto Bolaño is definitely talented with words.

If the Dress Fits by Carla de Guzman (4 stars) 

This book is funny and cute. The main character, Martha, is plus sized and she has a positive relationship with her weight and that makes this story really valuable.  The book is set in the Philippines and the cultural aspects are very fasicnating and insightful. Also, there ‘s fake dating and the best friends to lovers trope in this story, which allows some emotional moments and makes this book really swoony.

Well Played by Katrina Ramos Atienza (3,4 stars)

This is a Pride and Prejudice retelling set in a university in the Philippine and learning a little bit about how things work in their educational system is entertatining. The characters are interesting enough and the romenace is good even if it takes way too long to start moving forward. The main problem with this book is that it’s too short and that makes the ending feel a bit rush.

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Tell Me Again How a Crush Should Feel by Sara Farizan (I didn’t give it a rating)

This book has really problematic content; there are biphobic comments, ableist comment,  a woc is called ‘exotic’ repeately and there are a lot of other issues. At the same time, this is #ownvoices, the author shared the sexuality and ethnicity of the main character. The few things I liked about this book were that it has a lesbian Persian main character, her family and their culture were big parts of the book, her friends were great and the love story we get at the very end was cute. I’m really conflicted about this book and I think I wouldn’t recommend it.

The Backstagers by James Tynion IV & Rian Sygh ( 4Stars)

This is a cute and short graphic novel that has a diverse cast of character and great representation. Also, it has mystery and fantastical elements that make it interesting and intriguing.Here’s my review.

How to Make a Wish by Ashley Herring Blake ( 4,5 stars) 

I recieved an ARC of this book in exchange of an honest review. This book has an amazing romance, Grace and Eva are so cute! Grace is bisexual and Eva is a biracial lesbian girl, these topics are address in a sensitive and thoughtful way; this book is a great example of representation done right. Another good thing about the book is the story of Grace and her mom, which is raw and complicated and told with so much honesty.

Americanah by Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie (4,2 stars)

This book is about a love story, pure and simple. There are a lot of important subjects discussed, especially race, but at its core I feel this is a love story. A beautifully written love story that can be slow at times, but that by the end it has the reader engrossed. It is defenitely a character driven story, the main character Ifemelu is really complex and kind of intriguing, while the plot is a simpler one.

Every Heart a Doorway by Seanan McGuire (4,3 stars)

This is a odd book that has a really fascinating premise.  Hearing about all the different lands the kids went to was incredibly entertaining and the diverse cast of characters, both in terms of LGBTQ+ community and POC’s is represented in a thoughtful and considerate way.

  Have you read any of these books? Did you enjoy them? Do you want to read any of them? Let me know in the comments! 

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Diversity Spotlight Thursday #2

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I really enjoyed participating in this meme last week, so I’m back with more diverse books! Diversity Spotlight Thrusday is a weekly meme hosted by Aimal from Bookshelves and Paperbacks. Every week, the participants are suppost to choose one book for each of the three categories: a diverse book you have read and enjoyed, a diverse book on your tbr, and a diverse book that has not yet been released. 

I have decided to pick  books that have  less than a thousand ratings on Goodreads, because I want to promote less known diverse books and authors, and I will try to choose only #ownvoices books, because I want the authors that I promote to be members of minorities and marginalized groups.

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Juliet Takes a Breath by Gabby Rivera

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Juliet Milagros Palante is leaving the Bronx and headed to Portland, Oregon. She just came out to her family and isn’t sure if her mom will ever speak to her again. But Juliet has a plan, sort of, one that’s going to help her figure out this whole “Puerto Rican lesbian” thing. She’s interning with the author of her favorite book: Harlowe Brisbane, the ultimate authority on feminism, women’s bodies, and other gay-sounding stuff. 

Will Juliet be able to figure out her life over the course of one magical summer? Is that even possible? Or is she running away from all the problems that seem too big to handle?

With more questions than answers, Juliet takes on Portland, Harlowe, and most importantly, herself.

Goodreads | Amazon 

I don’t know how many times have I talked about this book in the last 2 months, but I don’t think I will be stopping any time soon. I will say this again, just in case you don’t know, this was my favorite book of 2016 and it’s now one of my favorite books of all times. Because of that, I want everyone to read it. So this is the weekly reminder that if you haven’t read this, you should. This book talks about feminism, queerness and intersectionality in a perfect way. Also, it has a main character that I want to protect at all cost, because she is precious.

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Empress of a Thousand Skies by Rhoda Belleza 

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Empress

Rhee, also known as Crown Princess Rhiannon Ta’an, is the sole surviving heir to a powerful dynasty. She’ll stop at nothing to avenge her family and claim her throne.

Fugitive
Aly has risen above his war refugee origins to find fame as the dashing star of a DroneVision show. But when he’s falsely accused of killing Rhee, he’s forced to prove his innocence to save his reputation – and his life.

Madman
With planets on the brink of war, Rhee and Aly are thrown together to confront a ruthless evil that threatens the fate of the entire galaxy.

A saga of vengeance, warfare, and the true meaning of legacy.

Goodreads | Amazon 

This book was one of my most anticipated books of 2017 and it was released a few days ago. I’m a big fan of fantasy, so I’m always in the lookout for diverse fantasy books and this book has an asian main character, as well as a black main character . The synopsis of Empress of a Thousand Skies intrigued me and the cover captivated me. Also, I participated in a twitter chat with the author and she is incredibly nice. This is the kind of fantasy book that I want to see more of.

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How to Make a Wish by Ashley Herring Blake

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All seventeen year-old Grace Glasser wants is her own life. A normal life in which she sleeps in the same bed for longer than three months and doesn’t have to scrounge for spare change to make sure the electric bill is paid. Emotionally trapped by her unreliable mother, Maggie, and the tiny cape on which she lives, she focuses on her best friend, her upcoming audition for a top music school in New York, and surviving Maggie’s latest boyfriend—who happens to be Grace’s own ex-boyfriend’s father.

Her attempts to lay low until she graduates are disrupted when she meets Eva, a girl with her own share of ghosts she’s trying to outrun. Grief-stricken and lonely, Eva pulls Grace into midnight adventures and feelings Grace never planned on. When Eva tells Grace she likes girls, both of their worlds open up. But, united by loss, Eva also shares a connection with Maggie. As Grace’s mother spirals downward, both girls must figure out how to love and how to move on.

Goodreads| Amazon

This book sounds both adorable and incredible sad at the same time. I just got an arc through Netgalley, so I’m super excited to be able to read it before release date, which is May 2nd 2017. The LGBTQ+ characters are one of the main reasons I’m looking forward to reading this.

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Have you read any of these? Did you like them? Can you recommend me some diverse books you love?