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Forum: Intriguing Books by Asian Authors

Asian Author

I enjoyed reading White Tiger by Aravind Adiga though a bit difficult to get into at first.

4 years ago


Try Chang-Rae Lee. Excellent!
Pottery Maker
4 years ago
Sort of semi-Asian because he now lives in Canada, but I have enjoyed all the books by Rohinton Mistry, especially A Fine Balance.
Nancy Gluck
4 years ago
My friend's read all the AMy Tan books and loves them. I just received my first and will check it out soon!
4 years ago
My friend's read all the Amy Tan books and loves them. I just received my first and will check it out soon!
4 years ago
I have White Tiger on my to be read pile; I am glad to hear you enjoyed it.

Other Indian writers I like are Kiran Desai and Amitav Ghosh. And one my favorite books ever is Arundhati Roy's "The God of Small Things."

For contemporary Japanese writers I like Kazuo Ishiguro and Haruki Murakami. They live in England and the US, but still have a distinctive Asian style.

For an older Japanese writer, Yukio Mishima's series will really give you a taste of earlier 1900's Japan, and the imperialistic thinking of that time.

Ha Jin has some great and deceptively simple books set in China.

4 years ago
Haruki Murakami & "Wind-up Bird." Also a Chinese author has written an intriguing book "Pearl of China" about Pearl Buck, one of the most under-rated Asian writers of the 20th century. Ishiguro is not an Asian writer, he is a Western writer with Japanese ancestry.
4 years ago
I really like Amitav Ghosh, but I tend to prefer Japanese authors like Haruki Murakami, Banana Yoshimoto, Natsuo Kirini and 'I Am A Cat' by Soseki Natsume.
I also really enjoyed 'Shanghai Baby' by Wei Hui, an excellent novel though not nearly as shocking as the blurb suggests.
Penny Waugh
4 years ago
I read The Bridegroom by Ha Jin some years ago. According to my journal notes, I rated it very favorably. Clear, concise writing style.

The Samurai's Garden by Gail Tsukiyama was lucid. It is written in the form of diary entries written sporadically. This story has a freshness to it that I admired.

The Good Women of China by Xinran Xue, an investigative memoir, presented the perspective that women carry the burden of the world, while men reign as kings. It gives incisive commentary on the aftermath of China's Cultural Revolution.

4 years ago
Wild Swans by Jung Chang. Great book spanning generations in China, pre and through the communist times.
4 years ago
For YA/children's books, try Cynthia Kadohata. She won the Newbery award for Kira-Kira.
4 years ago
As to Kazuo Ishiguro, he was born in Japan, and moved to England when he was six, so I guess he can be classified as either Japanese or English. I find his book "A Pale View of Hills" to be distinctly Japanese, very much like Yukio Mishima.
4 years ago
Right now I have 3:
"Soul Mountain" by Gao Xingjian about a man who delivers 2 or 3 threads of narrative experiences as he journeys across China to find a mountain to climb to purge his soul. He describes his current journey while weaving into his narrative as he journeys along past experiences with dream sequences as well as narratives within narratives of old folk tales.

"The Book Of Salt" by Monique Troung about a Vietnamese cook who serves Gertrude Stein and Alice B. Toklas in 1930's Paris. It has the same rhythm and pace as "The Remains of The Day".

"Becoming Madame Mao" by Anchee Men. I haven't read it yet but it is a fictionalized account of how the young girl became, well, Madame Mao Zedong.

I have them listed on in the used section, but if you really really want them I can unlist them and list them here for mooching.
There is a new university in my town and I believe there is an English lit class that focuses on Asian authors, so occasionally the thrift store has a bunch of odd ones now and then. I get them for my sister the high school English teacher for her classes, but I can list a few here.

4 years ago
I read a book a number of years ago called Outlet. It was by an Asian author, and I remember liking it for being a little out there. Unfortunately, I don't remember much more about it. I second recommendations for Amy Tan and Kazuo Ishiguro.
4 years ago
I third recommendations for Amy Tan! I have just finished reading her book, The Bonesetter's Daughter and I thought it was excellent. I have a couple of others waiting in my 'to read' pile.
I also enjoyed 'Never Let Me Go' by Kazuo Ishiguro; I've read it a couple of times which is quite rare for me!
I am currently reading my first Haruki Murakami book but haven't read enough to be able to comment yet.

enn, I would love to get a copy of Becoming Madame Mao if you would be able to ship to the UK?

I have also wishlisted some Xinran books, noteably 'The Good Women of China' and 'What the Chinese Don't Eat'. Anything on footbinding fascinates me as well.

4 years ago
Anything by Anchee Min, especially "Becoming Madame Mao". Also, Banana Yoshimoto is another great contemporary Asian author.
4 years ago
The Woman in the Dunes by Kobo Abe -- it's part social commentary, part love story, part dystopia (sort of a Japanese take on Lord of the Flies, only with adults as protagonists).
4 years ago
Camy Tang is a Christian author. I know she wrote at least one Love-Inspired Suspense title. She's written other books and I think Sushi might be in the title. They might be chick lit books.
Michelle Fidler
4 years ago
Try Banana Yoshimoto or Kip Fulbeck.
4 years ago
There is a zombie/vampire novel by a Chinese/Korean novelist named Paul Loh. It's called the Nocent part 2: Advent of the Scathing. He is putting it out for free online at
Paul Loh
4 years ago
If you like historical fiction, then you should definitely check out Lisa See. Her book Snow Flower and the Secret Fan is absolutely beautiful. She has several others that I have not gotten to read yet, though I am working on Peony in Love, and already loving it.
3 years ago
Banana Heart Summer by Merlinda Bobis, a book about a young girl's coming of age in Bicol, the Philippines. Book is about food and how it relates to love and characters' feelings and thoughts. Good book!
3 years ago
My recommendations:

The Blue Bedspread - Raj Kamal Jha (India)
Burnt Shadows - Kamila Shamsie (Pakistan)
Broken Verses - Kamila Shamsie (Pakistan)
Dogeaters - Jessica Hagedorn (The Philippines)
The Proper Care of Foxes (short stories) - Wena Poon (Singapore)
The Rice Mother - Rani Manicka (Sri Lanka/Malaysia)

Haruki Murakami I also like very much. I started with Wild Sheep Chase (didn't realise it at the time, but later on it made sense to start with that one) and then moved on to The Wind-Up Bird Chronicle, Dance Dance Dance, Sputnik Sweetheart, Kafka on the Shore....

3 years ago
1Q84 by Haruki Murakami is popular now. Murakami likes urban fantasy themes. One of the most intriguing aspects of his work is that he has ambient music -- that is, the characters are often listening to something specific, and curious readers can hunt up this music and play a sort of soundtrack to the story.
Joanna P
2 years ago
My favourites:


* Homecoming - Jiro Osaragi
* The Sound of Waves - Yukio Mishima
* After Dark - Haruki Murakami


* No One's Perfect - Hirotada Ototake

I tried reading sorts of novels written by Japanese writers (English-translated) but some of them make me squirm...

1 year ago

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