I have Naz and his Diverse Books tag to thank for some wonderful time browsing my book shelves. For each of his prompts, I’ve listed one book I’ve read and one I would like to read.
Find a book starring a lesbian character.
Read: Frog Music, Emma Donoghue (“lyrical tale of love and bloodshed among lowlifes”)
To Read: Fingersmith, Sarah Waters (“hypnotic suspense novel awash with all manner of gloomy Dickensian leitmotifs”)
Find a book with a Muslim protagonist.
Read: Ms. Marvel, G. Willow Wilson (Kamala Khan is no ordinary girl from Jersey City)
To Read: The Girl in the Tangerine Scarf, Mohja Kahf (“charts the spiritual and social landscape of Muslims in middle America”)
Find a book set in Latin America.
Read: Love in the Time of Cholera, Gabriel García Marquez (“the agelessness of the human story as told by one of our most evocative writers”)
To Read: The Hummingbird’s Daughter, Luis Alberto Urrea (based on Urrea’s real great-aunt, who had healing powers and was acclaimed as a saint)
Find a book about a person with a disability.
Read: Spill, Simmer, Falter, Wither, Sara Baume (a misfit man adopts a misfit dog)—my review
To Read: The Giant’s House, Elizabeth McCracken (the love story of a lonely librarian and a younger man forced into loneliness because of his monstrous size)
Find a Science-Fiction or Fantasy book with a POC protagonist.
Read: Lagoon, Nnedi Okorafor (aliens in Nigeria)—my review
To Read: Fledgling, Octavia Butler (“the only vampire novel that explores modern-day racism”)
Find a book set in (or about) any country in Africa.
Read: Life & Times of Michael K, J M Coetzee (“goes to the center of human experience”)
To Read: The Memory of Love, Aminatta Forna (In contemporary Sierra Leone, a devastating civil war has left an entire populace with secrets to keep.)
Find a book written by an Indigenous or Native author (use tribal names if possible).
Read: The Dance Boots, Linda LeGarde Grover (an Ojibwe community struggling to follow traditional ways of life in the face of a relentlessly changing world)
To Read: The Swan Book, Alexis Wright (“reminds readers that the misery and upheaval promised by climate change has already come to Australia’s first people”)
Find a book set in South Asia (Afghanistan, India, Pakistan, Sri Lanka, etc.).
Read: The River’s Song, Suchen Christine Lim (“like the immersion in a vivid dream”)—my review
To Read: Before We Visit the Goddess, Chitra Banerjee Divakaruni (a masterful, brilliant tale of a family both united and torn apart by ambition and love)
Find a book with a biracial protagonist.
Read: Boy, Snow, Bird, Helen Oyeyemi (confronts the tyranny of the mirror to ask how much power surfaces really hold)
To Read: Alif the Unseen, G. Willow Wilson (“an action-packed adventure into the world of the jinn”)
Find a book starring a transgender character or about transgender issues.
Read: Annabel, Kathleen Winter (In 1968, a baby is born who appears to be neither fully boy nor fully girl, but both at once.)—my review
To Read: The Unintentional Time Traveler, Everett Maroon (Jack suddenly finds himself in the body of a girl who defies the expectations of her era.)