Sunday, June 19, 2016

Diverse Books Tag

I saw Jenny's post with this tag and took it upon myself to tag myself, because I really wanted to make this list.  So, without further ado:
The Diverse Books Tag is a bit like a scavenger hunt. I will task you to find a book that fits a specific criteria and you will have to show us a book you have read or want to read.
If you can’t think of a book that fits the specific category, then I encourage you to go look for oneA quick Google search will provide you with many books that will fit the bill. (Also, Goodreads lists are your friends.) Find one you are genuinely interested in reading and move on to the next category.
Everyone can do this tag, even people who don’t own or haven’t read any books that fit the descriptions below. So there’s no excuse! The purpose of the tag is to promote the kinds of books that may not get a lot of attention in the book blogging community.
Find a book starring a lesbian character.
I have been wanting to read Everything Leads to You, by Nina LaCour, for ages.  I'm pretty sure it's new adult romance, which is not always my jam, but it's about a set dresser in Hollywood, which kind of is, so I'm excited.

Find a book with a Muslim protagonist.
Oh, here I want to talk up Scarlett Undercover, by Jennifer Latham, because it's a really fun teen detective book with a vaguely supernatural and very Veronica Mars vibe. Scarlett's relationship with her sister and her sense of family are tied closely to her religion, and I love the way she honors those things without necessarily being a believer.

Find a book set in Latin America.
Alaya Dawn Johnson wrote The Summer Prince a few years ago, and I've always regretted not reading it.  There was some discussion about the use of Brazilian culture by an author who is not actually Brazilian herself, but the discussion was interesting and the book sounds very well done, and like something I very much want to read.

Find a book about a person with a disability.
Otherbound, by Corinne Duyvis, is about a boy who has visions every time he closes his eyes (and, in a separate but connected storyline, about the girl he has visions about). This causes him all sorts of problems concentrating and managing life, and he lost a leg in an accident at one point because of this.  The girl in the other part of the story is mute, having had her tongue cut out when she was made a slave.

Find a science fiction or fantasy book with a POC protagonist.
Oh, there are so many places to go with this one.  Let's see, I think I'll hit N.K. Jemisin's The Hundred Thousand Kingdoms, because it's one of my absolute favorites.  But that's pretty famous and I've talked it up before, so I'm going to throw in a little nod for a comic that I haven't heard much about--Bayou, a creepy, Wonderlandesque story about a little girl in the South in the 1920s whose father is accused of killing her white playmate.  Lee goes into the swamp to try to get the girl back and prove her father's innocence, but the world she has to travel is both marvelous and dangerous. Sadly, only two volumes came out, but they're wonderful.

Find a book set in (or about) any country in Africa.
Mala Nunn's A Beautiful Place to Die was a gorgeous mystery novel that is very much about place, both geographically (the South African veldt), historically (apartheid), and culturally (a small town in the 1950s).

Find a book written by an Aboriginal or American Indian author.
This is just what this tag was meant to do--this one sent me hunting.  I mean, I could have gone with one of the Sherman Alexie or Louise Erdrich books that I've loved or that I'm excited for, but instead I went looking for something new.  What I picked is Ragged Company, by Richard Wagamese.  It's about four homeless people who spend their days in a movie theater.  When they find a winning lottery ticket but can't claim the prize without proper identification, they get one of the regulars at the movie house to help them out, and their fates become entwined.  It sounds fascinating, and like one of those "glimpse inside the world" books that I really enjoy.

Find a book set in South Asia (Afghanistan, India, Pakistan, Sri Lanka, etc.)
Looking at my Goodreads, I think everyone I know has read Aravind Adiga's The White Tiger except me.  And I love a good antihero protagonist. So let's fix that problem, shall we?

Find a book with a biracial protagonist.
I'm reading one right now! Corinne Duyvis's On the Edge of Gone is about a teenaged girl trying to take care of her drug-addicted mother and find her missing sister during an end-of-the world scenario involving a meteor.  Denise and her mother are Dutch, but her father is Surinamese, and this is one of many ways that Denise often feels apart from the people around her.

Find a book starring a transgender character or about transgender issues.
I'll take this moment to plug Beautiful Music for Ugly Children, which I read a couple of years ago and really liked. It's a pretty straightforward story of a trans guy dealing with high school--coming out to his parents, friends, and acquaintances, and the pleasure he finds in music and the local radio show he DJs. It's "just" a slice of life book, but I found it honest and really lovely.

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