12 middle grade books by Asian Authors (Part 1)

I joined this bookish community in late may and therefore missed the asian heritage month. Plus in till end of june I rarely interacted with other bloggers . I love representation in media and want do my best to support diverse books ! Also I love middle grade books and being one of the youngest book bloggers these are the books I mostly read .

Why I love Middle Grade Books ?

  • Middle grade books allow me the perfect, calming escape
  • The friendships!
  • They cover some deep topics.
  • THEY’RE ADDICTIVELY FUN AND FUNNY and are short read mostly within 250 pages

I am hoping to have 2 parts of this post both including books I have read and books on my TBR . Don’t forget to checkout May , Chole and Ash’s post for more recs !

Note : The covers are linked to goodreads

Books I have read :

The Magic of the Lost Temple ( #Ownvoice review)

Author is of Indian descent

Discover the magic of the lost temple

Are you a curious reader, ready to explore the depths of the magic hidden in the lost temple of Karnataka? Are you ready to join Nooni as she travels around to discover the answers to her questions? If yes, then this book, ‘The Magic of the Lost Temple’ is a must have. Nooni is a city girl who is very surprised at the unexpected pace of life in her grandparent’s village in the state of Karnataka. Not being fazed with the turn of events, she engages herself in many of the odd jobs that are available in the village. She resorts to doing work like Papad making, organising enjoyable picnics, learning to ride a cycle and a long list of activities with her new found friends.

Join Nooni as things get complex and she discovers something really exciting

Things get far from exciting when Nooni comes across a very ancient stepwell that is located right in the middle of a forest. As she tries to discover the mystery behind this well, the story takes a drastic turn when she unravels things she didn’t envisage before. Join Nooni as she unfolds the secrets linked to this stepwell along with her friends as they bask in the experience of a lifetime.

Unfold the secrets hidden in the forest

Join the very curious character of Nooni as she unfolds the mystery behind the stepwell. Her incessant urge to abstracting information is what leads her on this adventure. This much awaited book by Sudha Murty is indeed a heart-warming read.

The story is engaging and captivating. There are so many things for kids to read and learn from the story. The books teach us about the village life and culture, the fauna and flora of forests, the virtue of respecting elders, culminating good and healthy relationship with friends. The unity and generosity of Ajji, Ajja, and all the villagers to help the archaeological people inspire us to be helpful to others.

Pashmina by Nidhi Chanani (#Ownvoice Review)

Author is of Indian descent

“Priyanka Das has so many unanswered questions: Why did her mother abandon her home in India years ago? What was it like there? And most importantly, who is her father, and why did her mom leave him behind? But Pri’s mom avoids these questions–the topic of India is permanently closed.
In this heartwarming graphic novel debut, Nidhi Chanani weaves a tale about the hardship and self-discovery that is born from juggling two cultures and two worlds”

 Aru Shah and the End of Time ( #Ownvoice Review )

Author is of Indian descent

Twelve-year-old Aru Shah has a tendency to stretch the truth in order to fit in at school. While her classmates are jetting off to family vacations in exotic locales, she’ll be spending her autumn break at home, in the Museum of Ancient Indian Art and Culture, waiting for her mom to return from her latest archeological trip. Is it any wonder that Aru makes up stories about being royalty, traveling to Paris, and having a chauffeur?

One day, three schoolmates show up at Aru’s doorstep to catch her in a lie. They don’t believe her claim that the museum’s Lamp of Bharata is cursed, and they dare Aru to prove it. Just a quick light, Aru thinks. Then she can get herself out of this mess and never ever fib again.

But lighting the lamp has dire consequences. She unwittingly frees the Sleeper, an ancient demon whose duty it is to awaken the God of Destruction. Her classmates and beloved mother are frozen in time, and it’s up to Aru to save them.

The only way to stop the demon is to find the reincarnations of the five legendary Pandava brothers, protagonists of the Hindu epic poem, the Mahabharata, and journey through the Kingdom of Death. But how is one girl in Spider-Man pajamas supposed to do all that”

I love how Chokshi incorporates the Hindu mythology. As I am a Hindu, I know a LOT of this mythology. I always love the myth of Pandavas and Kauravas. She did a fantastic job of adapting them into a modern narrative while still preserving their essence and doing justice to the source material. I loved Aru and Mimi were so likable and adorable ! I enjoyed the side characters as well, especially that of the bird, who added much needed comic relief as well as intrigue. The plot followed a formula similar to Rick’s books and as a huge fan of that, I was sucked in from the beginning.

Any Day with You

Author is of Filipino descent

A story about a creative girl who hopes that by winning a filmmaking contest, she’ll convince her great-grandfather not to move back home to the Philippines.

Kaia and her family live near the beach in California, where the fun of moviemaking is all around them. Kaia loves playing with makeup and creating special effects, turning her friends into merfolk and other magical creatures.

This summer, Kaia and her friends are part of a creative arts camp, where they’re working on a short movie to enter in a contest. The movie is inspired by the Filipino folktales that her beloved Tatang, her great-grandfather, tells. Tatang lives with her family and is like the sparkle of her special-effects makeup. When Tatang decides that it is time to return to his homeland in the Philippines, Kaia will do anything to convince him not to go.

I adored the sweet relationship that Kaia had with her great-grandfather, the inclusion of Filipino folklore, the familial warmth, & the way Kaia matured throughout the story. I love her great-grandfather’s wisdom and how he responds to the negativity in the world. The lessons he teaches Kaia and her friends, Trey and Abby, are priceless and ones we could all integrate into our lives.

Book cover showing Amina smiling.

 Amina’s Voice by Hena Khan

Author is of Pakistani Descent

“Amina has never been comfortable in the spotlight. She is happy just hanging out with her best friend, Soojin. Except now that she’s in middle school everything feels different. Soojin is suddenly hanging out with Emily, one of the “cool” girls in the class, and even talking about changing her name to something more “American.” Does Amina need to start changing too? Or hiding who she is to fit in? While Amina grapples with these questions, she is devastated when her local mosque is vandalized.

A sweet and heartfelt story with a great cast of diverse character.It’s all quite simple, but it’s written in such a lovely and touching way that you can’t help but fall in love with it. Hena Khan also incorporates some food into the novel and my mouth was WATERING as I read (and my stomach craved a delicious, home cooked meal.)Plus the cover is gorgeous !!!!

Book cover showing Minli flying with a dragon at night.

 Where The Mountain Meets The Moonby Grace Lin

Author is of Chinese descent

“In the Valley of Fruitless Mountain, a young girl named Minli spends her days working hard in the fields and her nights listening to her father spin fantastic tales about the Jade Dragon and the Old Man of the Moon. Minli’s mother, tired of their poor life, chides him for filling her head with nonsense. But Minli believes these enchanting stories and embarks on an extraordinary journey to find the Old Man of the Moon and ask him how her family can change their fortune.”

I knew very little about this book before I read it, which probably contributed greatly to my utter delight in this charming story. This was really wonderful to read—With its beautiful illustrations, and lovely story based off Chinese mythology, I definitely give a thumbs up to this MG fantasy. 🙂

 Front Desk by Kelly Yang

Author is of Chinese descent

Mia Tang has a lot of secrets.

Number 1: She lives in a motel, not a big house. Every day, while her immigrant parents clean the rooms, ten-year-old Mia manages the front desk of the Calivista Motel and tends to its guests.

Number 2: Her parents hide immigrants. And if the mean motel owner, Mr. Yao, finds out they’ve been letting them stay in the empty rooms for free, the Tangs will be doomed.

Number 3: She wants to be a writer. But how can she when her mom thinks she should stick to math because English is not her first language?

It will take all of Mia’s courage, kindness, and hard work to get through this year. Will she be able to hold on to her job, help the immigrants and guests, escape Mr. Yao, and go for her dreams?

Based on the author’s own experience coming to America from China at a young age and having to help her parents manage a small hotel. Fascinating, heartbreaking, and ultimately full of hope.  I was invested in Mia’s story from page one. I couldn’t wait to find out what would happen to her and her Chinese immigrant family as they struggled to make ends meet as managers of a motel while the whole world seemed to be against them–except, ultimately, their own vibrant diverse community.  The story is full of tough lessons about the world as well !It explores topic such as racism,proverty and immigration

Books on my TBR :

(Author of Filipino descent ) This sounds like a beautiful s MG book. Also after all the reviews I have read it sounds like a very touching story .

I think I am going to love this fun, uplifting, and heartwarming middle grade

(Author is of Indian Descent)

It is about An Indian-American girl who struggles to navigate her two very different lives: the one at home, where she can be herself, and the one at school, where she is teased for her culture. When a racist incident rocks her small town, she must decide to continue to remain silent or find her voice. I just can’t wait to read this book !

(One of the authors is Pakistani)

 A middle grade novel centered around friendship and food (and of course who wouldn’t love that title and cover!?) It also explores deep and important topics like unlikely friendships, culture, family, handling racism, and standing up for what is right.

Have you read any of these books?Will you be adding new books to your TBR after reading this post ? What is your favourite book by an Asian Author ?

26 thoughts on “12 middle grade books by Asian Authors (Part 1)”

  1. Okay, Amina’s Voice sounds so wonderful and sweet (and I’m totally not biased at the fact that the main character has the same name as me hahaha) I’m not such an avid reader of middle grade books, but I will recommend these too my younger sister. Great post!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks ! I loved amina’s voice….it was adorable and heartwarming and put a huge smile on my face 🙂 diverse middle grade books like this one are the absolute best and never fail to make me happy….and hehe what a coincedence ..as I am just getting into YA and I haven’t read many YA books by asian authors so I feel more comfortable recommending mg books by asian authors….Hope your sister likes these books 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

  2. I love middle grade books as well! I think they’re perfect to read in one sitting and tend to cover really important topics as you say. These look fantastic and I’ve added some to my tbr list


    1. Wow that is great ! Yes exactly …and ahh I am glad you found some interesting books after reading my ppst…thanks for reading 🙂
      ( ps- sorry for the late reply…I think it had gone in spam )


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