May is Asian American and Pacific Islander Heritage Month in the United States and Asian Heritage Month in Canada, and while the month is coming to an end, there’s still plenty of time to find your next favorite book.
People of East Asian and Pacific Islander descent have made vast contributions to the fields of science fiction and fantasy throughout history, and May is the perfect month to honor this by checking out science fiction books. AAPI authors. We’ve rounded up 10 recent books that no sci-fi and fantasy library should be without.
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The Wolf of Oren-Yaro by KS Villoso (Chronicles of the Slut Queen #1)
The first volume by author KS Villoso Chronicles of the Slut Queen, The Wolf of Oren-Yaro follows the queen of an island nation inspired by the Philippines as she fights to retain power from those who would seek to steal it from her. After being double crossed and left for dead, Queen Talyien must fight to stay alive and regain her crown. But that’s much easier said than done as killers and betrayals lurk around every corner.
Born beneath the crumbling towers of her kingdom, Queen Talyien was the shining jewel and legacy of the bloody Wolf War. It almost tore his nation apart. But her arranged marriage with the son of a rival clan heralds peace.
However, he suddenly disappears before their reign can begin, and the kingdom is fractured beyond repair.
Years later, he sends a mysterious invitation to meet. Talyien crosses the sea in the hope of reconciling his past. An assassination attempt quickly destroys these dreams. Stranded in a country she doesn’t know, without knowing who she can trust, Talyien will have to embrace her namesake.
The next two books The Ikessar Falcon and Jin Sayeng’s Dragon, complete the story of Talyien, so if you want a full series to get lost in, this has you covered. The author also has several stand-alone novels set in the same world.
To find The Wolf of Oren-Yaro on Amazon.
The Bone Shard Daughter by Andrea Stewart (The Drowning Empire #1)
Andrea Stewart swept the fantasy scene in 2021 with her fantastic debut novel The Bone Shard Daughter. It’s the story of an empire backed by a macabre magical order that controls its population, and the various memorable characters that work to overthrow the system. Stewart combines fantasy and horror in a way that feels fresh, with monstrous constructs stitched together from various parts of different animals stalking the halls of the palace, and gruesome costs to perform magic.
It’s not all grim though; this series also has a fantastic sense of humor, with one of the cutest animal companions around. The Drowning Empire takes place on a chain of drifting islands and features many inter-island adventures and politics.
The Emperor’s reign has lasted for decades, his mastery of bone shard magic powering the animal-like constructs that maintain law and order. But now his rule is failing and revolution is sweeping across the many islands of the Empire.
Lin is the Emperor’s daughter and spends her days locked away in a palace with locked doors and dark secrets. When her father refuses to recognize her as heir to the throne, she vows to prove her worth by mastering the forbidden art of bone shard magic.
Yet such power comes at a high cost, and when the revolution reaches the palace gates, Lin must decide how far she’s willing to go to claim her birthright – and save her people.
Book two of The Drowning Empire, The Bone Shard Emperorwas released at the end of 2021. The last volume of the trilogy is expected in 2023.
To find The Bone Shard Daughter on Amazon.