Upcoming BIPOC Reads
By Shaniah Shields, Jia Wen Ho, Madhu Manivannan and Leanne Francis
Kaikeyi by Vaishnavi Patel – 26 April
A retelling of the Ramayana, the ancient Indian epic, through the eyes of the villainess, Kaikeyi. As the only daughter in Kebaya, she’s denied all the privileges of sons. She forges a short-lived independence, through her discovery of a special magic.
Confessions of an Alleged Good Girl by Joya Goffney – 3 May
When the preacher’s daughter Monique discovers she has a medical condition she concocts a plan to fix her body and win her ex-boyfriend Dom back. This is a fresh, fun and inspirational YA gem which provides a powerful journey towards loving yourself. It contains explicit references to sex and sexual health.
All The Lovers In The Night by Mieko Kawakami, translated by Sam Bett and David Boyd – 3 May
A trademark feature of Mieko Kawakami’s writing is the pathos with which she envelops each sentence, with even ordinarily small or insignificant moments in her stories evoking a profound sense of understanding and insight. All The Lovers In The Night, recently translated and released into English, appears to be no exception. Following a proofreader in her mid-thirties whose chance encounter with a man stirs within her a desire for change, it is a novel that promises to explore the burden of healing from a painful past as well as the experienced through forging the strength to create a new future.
Set on You by Amy Lea – 12 May
Set on You is the debut novel by Amy Lea, which is set to be a TikTok sensation. Crystal Chen, a plus-size fitness influencer, has built her career shattering gym stereotypes. After a recent break-up she has been finding joy in the gym, until smug firefighter Scott routinely steals her favourite squat rack. But sparks soon fly; has Crystal found her person?
Translating Myself and Others by Jhumpa Lahiri – 17 May
Consisting of “candid and disarmingly personal essays” written over the past seven years, Translating Myself and Others looks to be a fascinating insight into the art of translation itself. Featuring essays written in Italian and published in English for the first time as well as original English essays, Lahiri explores her role as a translator and how it also intertwines with her roles as a reader and a writer.
City of Orange by David Yoon – 24 May
Described as a novel that is both “harrowing and haunting,” City of Orange is a psychological fiction written by New York Times bestselling author, David Yoon. When a man wakes up in an apocalyptic landscape, injured and alone, he realises he is unable to remember his name or his life before. As he tries to forage for food and gather survival supplies, vague memories drift across his mind. It isn’t until he encounters an old man, a crow and a boy that he realises both past and present are not what he thought they were.
You Made a Fool of Death with Your Beauty by Akwaeke Emezi – 26 May
From the author of award shortlisted The Death of Vivek Oji, comes another novel rich in psychological insight. We follow artist Feyi, who is given the chance to escape the city for a dream island holiday. The plot reimagines a traditional love story in this fresh, seductive novel about healing from loss and finding the courage to hope.
Woman of Light by Kali Fajardo-Anstine – 7 June
Woman of Light, by Kali Fajardo-Anstine, is a “dazzling epic of betrayal, love, and fate that spans five generations.” This memorable novel tells the story of Luz ‘Little Light’ Lopez, who has to fend for herself after her brother is driven out of town by a violent white mob. As she learns to navigate life in 1930s Denver, Luz experiences visions of her ancestors in her indigenous homeland. Alone, she bears witness to the horrors that devastated her people and realises she must find a way to save her family’s stories from disappearing forever.
Team Chu and the Battle of Blackwood Arena by Julie C. Dao – 26 July
The sibling duo, Clip and Sadie are competitive in everything and cannot be more different. They share only one thing in common: a love for laser tag. Blackwood Arena is newly opened, featuring exciting laser tag games. But a competitive clash of laser tag becomes dangerous, when a sinister force lurks outside the simulation. The Chu siblings must work together to save themselves and their friends.
Foul Lady Fortune by Chloe Gong – 27 September
Set in the MinGuo era, where China is thrown into chaos after the crumbling of monarchist rule, this is the story of Rosalind, an assassin with unusual power of immortality, who is sent on a mission to uncover foreign plots against Shanghai. This time, she infiltrates into foreign societies by posing as a young couple with Orion Wong.