This tag was created by Naz @ Read Diverse Books and I was tagged by Izzi @ Ravenclaw Book Club! I absolutely love the idea for this tag; in recent years I’ve tried to make more of an effort to seek out and read books from authors who aren’t white, or straight, as it’s too easy to fall into the habit.
Here’s Naz’s description of the tag:
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 one. A 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.
So let’s get to it!
Find a book starring a lesbian character.
The Night Watch by Sarah Waters has multiple narrators; two of the women are lesbians, and while it is not explicitly stated, the male narrator is a gay man. Many of the side characters in this book are also lesbian women. The book takes place in London throughout the 1940s, so it’s refreshing and interesting to see a book that primarily focuses on the lives of queer people during this time period. I really enjoyed this book, and it’s one that I’d highly recommend.
Find a book with a Muslim protagonist.
Sofia Khan is Not Obliged by Ayisha Malik is a wonderful book told from the perspective of the titular character, Sofia, after she has broken up with her boyfriend/potential future husband, after he proves to be a little too close to his parents. It’s a funny and relatable book, and one that I should have a full review of very soon!
Find a book set in Latin America.
I was surprised to find out that the only book that I actually own that’s set in Latin America is One Hundred Years of Solitude by Gabriel Garcia Marquez, a book I haven’t yet read. Another book I’ve heard a lot about, but don’t own, is The House of the Spirits by Isabel Allende; I’m very interested in family sagas, and I don’t read enough of them.
Find a book about a person with a disability.
Not If I See You First by Eric Lindstrom follows Parker Grant, who is blind. I’ve heard a lot of good things about this book, and it always catches my eye in the book shop!
Find a science-fiction or fantasy book with a POC protagonist.
Proxy by Alex London has a POC protagonist, Syd, who is also gay. Syd is a a proxy for a wealthy kid, Knox, which means that he has to take the punishment for any crimes/transgressions that Knox commits. After Knox crashes a car, killing one of his friends, Syd is sentenced to death—and then it all gets much more complicated. I really enjoyed this book when I read it, and I haven’t really seen too many people talk about it.
In relation to diverse SFF, there’s also Kaleidoscope which is a collection of YA short stories, all of which feature diverse protagonists.
Find a book set in (or about) any country in Africa.
I’m very interested in Africa39, which is a fiction anthology featuring 39 African writers from south of the Sahara. I admittedly haven’t read many African writers, and this looks like a really good way to discover some new authors. I also really want to pick up Homegoing by Yaa Gyasi, which for some reason isn’t out in the UK until January next year?
Find a book written by an Indigenous or Native author
I know that Ceremony by Leslie Marmon Silko is a celebrated piece of Native American literature. And this isn’t Native American, but I have read Potiki by Patrica Grace, which is about an indigenous Maori community in New Zealand.
Find a book set in South Asia (Afghanistan, India, Pakistan, Sri Lanka, etc.)
I really would like to finish up Midnight’s Children by Salman Rushdie at some point. This was assigned reading for a postcolonial literature module I did at university, and I got part of the way through it, but ended up having to put it down, as it’s a bit of a chunky book. This is a magical realism novel that follows Saleem, who was born at the precise moment of India’s independence.
Find a book with a biracial protagonist.
I found The Chaos by Nalo Hopkinson, which is an urban fantasy book with a mixed race protagonist. As a plus, it seems this book also has LGBTQ+ themes. I hadn’t heard of Nalo Hopkinson before doing some research for this tag, but a lot of her books sound really interesting!
Find a book starring a transgender character, or about transgender issues.
And that’s that! I know there are a fair few of these that I haven’t read, but I did go and actively seek out more books for these categories if only to expand my own knowledge (and I’ve ended up adding a fair few books to my wishlist as a result!)
I’m tagging five people today, but if you’re interested in this tag, then I definitely encourage you to do it! I tag:
- Julianne @ Quilltricks
- Katherine @ Fabled Haven
- Emily @ Rose Read
- Sammie @ Bookshelves & Biros
- Ioana @ Books Reenchanted
Apologies if you’ve already done it/already been tagged but otherwise: have fun! And if you have any recommendations for me, based on the categories here, I’d really love to hear them 🙂