May is Asian Pacific American Heritage Month, a time to celebrate the cultures, traditions, and history of Asian-Americans and Pacific Islanders in the United States. In honor of this, we’re shining a spotlight on some of our favorite Asian-American authors.
There are writers of Asian descent in your lexicon, I’m sure. If you told us they were limited to the works of Amy Tan, Haruki Murakami, and/or Jhumpa Lahiri, though, we wouldn’t be surprised, but there’s also a whole world of lesser-known but no less exciting writers emerging in the literary space adding dimension to the Asian-American conversation.
Ahead, we bring you some of our favorites. Don’t limit your reading of them to this month alone, though. The brilliant books ahead are worth paying attention to just as much today as they are two months from now, next year, or even a decade from now.
The Association of Small Bombs by Karan Mahajan
Author Karan Mahajan took a risk by centering his second novel around the inner workings of a terrorist. But, it was one that paid off—and earned him a nomination for the national book award in 2016. The Association of Small Bombs starts after a bomb goes off in a busy New Delhi market. Two brothers lose their lives while their friend, Monsoor, though injured, survives. We repeat: This is only the beginning of the book. The rest dives deeper into the impact the bombing has on young Monsoor, the grieving parents, and the terrorists behind the attack.