The 8Asians Writers Asks: Read Any Good Books Lately?

Our internal e-mail lists have us discussing all kinds of stuff: Asian American identity, representation in the media, the experiences of activism in an academia setting and its progression as we transition to the working, adult world. And sometimes, we talk about books.

Lily: I’m in need of some good reading. Any ideas? Ideally I’d like to review books that are good (and thus worth sharing) and not just those that are new.
Moye: Are you looking for something Asian-centric? Or anything? I have plenty of ideas 🙂
Jeff: I’ve always wanted to read Carlos Bulosan’s “America is in the Heart” but never got around to it. I’ve also wanted to read “Have a Nice day: A Tale of blood and Sweat Socks” by Mick Foley but it isn’t particularly “Asiany”.
Lily: yeah, something asian-related.
Connie: The first “Asiany” book I read was “The Dim Sum of All Things” by Kim Wong Keltner. I read it freshman year in high school and loved it and recommended it to every Asian person I knew.
Efren: I haven’t read any “Asiany” books in a long time either, especially since I used to teach Asian American literature and found most of those books monotonous (whiny and focused on inter-generational conflict and identity, over and over and over again). Most of the Asian Am themed stuff I read that I’ve actually liked lately has been erotica since the good stuff really turns identity on its head, so to speak.
Jen: The NY Times has released their “Ten Best Books of 2008” and it looks like Unaccustomed Earth by Jhumpa Lahiri is Asiany — about Bengali Americans. The NY Times article also includes an excerpt — it might be a good read for those looking for a book to read.

So, are there any books that you folks recommend?

(Flickr photo credit: Hashmil)

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