Year of the Asian Sign-Up Post & TBR!

(Last Updated On: June 19, 2019)

One of my overall reading goals is to continue to read diversely and use my voice to boost these stories, so when I saw that four of my blogging faves created the Year of the Asian Reading Challenge, I knew that I had to take part!

The goal of the YARC is to read as many books written by Asian authors as you can in 2019 and is co-hosted by CW @ The Quiet Pond, Lily @ Sprinkles of Dreams, Shealea @ Shut Up, Shealea, and Vicky @ Vicky Who Reads.ย The challenge was created to celebrate Asian literature and Asian authors, and I am so excited to be taking part!

KAL’S YARC TBRbadge_tarsier

I decided to focus on the books on my owned TBR that are written by Asian authors, which is currently at thirteen titles! I know that I will be tempted by more books as the year continues, so my overall challenge goal will be Malayan tapir: 21 to 30 books read.

yarc tbr - books

  • Flame in the Mist by Renee Ahdieh
  • Want by Cindy Pon
  • Forest of a Thousand Lanterns by Julie C. Dao
  • Girls of Paper and Fire by Natasha Ngan
  • Warcross by Marie Lu
  • The Poppy War by R.F. Kuang
  • The Book of M by Peng Shepherd
  • Ignite the Stars by Maura Milan
  • Empire of Sand by Tasha Suri
  • Jade City by Fonda Lee
  • Descendant of the Crane by Joan He
  • City of Brass by S.A. Chakraborty
  • Here and Now and Then by Mike Chen
  • The Gilded Wolves by Roshani Chokshi
  • A House of Rage and Sorrowย by Sangu Mandanna

Note: I read digital ARCs for The Gilded Wolves and A Spark of White Fire in 2018 but plan on reading both of the finished copies this year. I originally was going to include A House of Rage and Sorrow on this list because it is one of my most anticipated releases for the year, but the cover hasn’t been revealed.


It should come as no surprise that I made a spreadsheet specifically for this challenge. I just really like data and tracking things, okay? If you want to check my progress on the challenge you are welcome to check out my spreadsheet!

I mainly wanted to track my progress on my YARC TBR because I know myself and will probably get distracted by other books down the road! I sincerely want to prioritize these 15 books on my owned TBR to the best of my ability, and at the end of the year I want to track breakdowns on author gender, countries represented, and my genre reading directly related to this challenge.

yarc stats sheet

Will you be participating in the Year of the Asian Reading Challenge? If so, what books are you most excited to read this year?!

spacer_wLet’s go on another adventure together!



  1. Meredith Rankin

    January 20, 2019 at 12:44 PM

    Cool. I hadn’t heard about this reading challenge, but I’m trying to focus on diversity in my book reviews so this is terrific. One question: do the authors have to currently reside in Asian countries, or can they be of Asian descent? For example, I recently finished The Widows of Malabar Hill by Sujata Massey. According to her bio, her parents are from India and Germany, but she was born and raised in the U.S. This counts, right?

    1. Shealea

      January 21, 2019 at 8:01 AM

      Hey, I’m Shealea, one of the organizers of YARC.

      By “Asian” authors, we’re pertaining to those of Asian descent and/or identify as Asian (or half-Asian). For more information, check out

      I hope that helps!

      1. Kaleena @ Reader Voracious

        January 24, 2019 at 8:42 AM

        Thank you so much for answering Meredith’s question, Shealea!

  2. Kat @ Novels & Waffles

    January 20, 2019 at 1:48 PM

    I AM SO EXCITED FOR THIS READING CHALLENGE!!! And true to brand, you’ve made an awesome spreadsheet that I might just have to steal and use myself (if that’s okay???). Your TBR for YARC looks amazing, btw!!

    1. Kaleena @ Reader Voracious

      January 24, 2019 at 8:45 AM

      YES OFC YOU CAN USE MY SPREADSHEET IF YOU WANT IT! Thanks so much and I can’t wait to see your TBR!

      1. Kat @ Novels & Waffles

        January 28, 2019 at 4:03 AM

        YESHHHHH!!! I’m seriously hoarding all of your spreadsheets over here, nbd. Haha.

        1. Kaleena @ Reader Voracious

          January 28, 2019 at 11:35 AM

          Awww that makes me so happy, thank you!

  3. Cam @ Camillea Reads

    January 20, 2019 at 2:21 PM

    This is a great lost! Seeing A Spark of White Fire and Empire of Sand there makes me so happy! When I found out about the Indian rep in these books I was so excited! It was such an amazing feeling to read about my culture and its myths. Happy reading!

    1. Kaleena @ Reader Voracious

      January 24, 2019 at 8:46 AM

      A Spark of White Fire is SO GOOD, I really enjoyed it and am excited to read a finished copy of it (I read an ARC) in advance of the second book later this year!

  4. Meeghan reads

    January 20, 2019 at 3:39 PM

    I love that you made a spreadsheet just for this. You action my life goals, Kaleena ๐Ÿ˜‚

    1. Kaleena @ Reader Voracious

      January 24, 2019 at 8:47 AM

      I am nothing but consistently on brand, hahaha

  5. Eustacia | Eustea Reads

    January 20, 2019 at 3:46 PM

    Ooooh those books look amazing (and their covers are gorgeous!!)

    Iโ€™m not doing YARC this year because Iโ€™m doing my own personal challenge – Iโ€™m trying to read more South East Asian books by authors from and living in SEA (I donโ€™t know why, but a lot of Asian books I see are by Asian diaspora, which means the themes they end up dealing with are fairly similar and not as relatable to me). Finding Singaporean books are easy now that Iโ€™m back but Iโ€™m having problems finding books from authors round the region :p Gotta check out the books you mentioned and see if they fit!

    1. Kaleena @ Reader Voracious

      January 24, 2019 at 8:48 AM

      These covers are all so pretty, I agree!!! I love your personal reading challenge and good luck finding books that fit!

  6. dinasoaur

    January 20, 2019 at 3:51 PM

    I love this so much! I, too, want to read more diversely this year. I don’t know if I can afford reading new releases exclusively but I do have some backlist books that are by marginalized groups. Ugh. I love that you made spreadsheets. Perfection.

    1. Kaleena @ Reader Voracious

      January 24, 2019 at 8:49 AM

      Yea mostly my list is actually made up of backlist titles I already own, most I nabbed during Kindle sales! I wanted to approach my TBR for the challenge in a way to help me tackle my owned TBR a bit, so this was perfect for me!

  7. thisisoneforthebooks

    January 20, 2019 at 4:55 PM

    I saw this challenge posted about on Twitter! I wanna read some of the books on your list ๐Ÿ˜Š and your tracking sheet is very impressive, thanks for sharing it!!!

    1. Kaleena @ Reader Voracious

      January 24, 2019 at 8:49 AM

      Thank you so much, and happy reading!!!

  8. Aimee (Aimee, Always)

    January 20, 2019 at 5:16 PM

    I’m keeping this list bookmarked since there are lots of titles here I’d love to read for myself, especially the ones in the first and last lines. ๐Ÿ˜‰ I’ve already read Warcross (fabulous, although I’ve heard not-so-great things about the sequel and have been putting it off), Ignite the Stars (just fine), and The Gilded Wolves (beautifully complex, but can be confusing). GOOD LUCK, LOVELY! โ™ฅ

    1. Kaleena @ Reader Voracious

      January 24, 2019 at 8:50 AM

      Awww Aimee, you are too sweet thank you!!! The Gilded Wolves is incredible (but yea the worldbuilding can be a little confusing), and I am so excited to hear you enjoyed Warcross! Happy reading, beautiful!

  9. Ayushi A Nair

    January 20, 2019 at 8:33 PM

    Amazing post! I’ve haven’t read any of them adding few to my tbr list.

    1. Kaleena @ Reader Voracious

      January 24, 2019 at 8:50 AM

      Thank you so much, and happy reading!

  10. Annemieke

    January 21, 2019 at 1:22 AM

    I love how you made a tracker. ๐Ÿ˜€

  11. brittanythebookguru

    January 21, 2019 at 7:55 AM

    This sounds like such a fun reading challenge! I’m considering joining. And I LOVE that you made a spreadsheet. That’s such a Kal thing to do ๐Ÿ˜‚

    1. Kaleena @ Reader Voracious

      January 24, 2019 at 8:52 AM

      I am true to my brand! Do join, I would love to see your TBR!

  12. Shealea

    January 21, 2019 at 8:05 AM

    So happy you’re participating! Not going to lie, I feel a teensy bit starstruck. Happy reading, Kaleena!

    1. Kaleena @ Reader Voracious

      January 24, 2019 at 8:53 AM

      Starstruck?! WHAT?! Puh-lease. I am so excited for this challenge and you ladies did an incredible job putting this together!

  13. waytoofantasy

    January 21, 2019 at 11:48 AM

    Yay, spreadsheets! I thought about join6this challenge too since I already have quite a few books by Asian authors in my TBR pile and list of coming books for this year. But knowing me I would get hypercompetitive and neglect all my other reads haha. Have fun with this one and good luck!

    1. Kaleena @ Reader Voracious

      January 24, 2019 at 8:54 AM

      Yea I am worried about being hyper competitive, too. Haha. That’s partially why I made my TBR from my owned-tbr (two birds one stone!), but it works for me. I think. Maybe.

      1. waytoofantasy

        January 24, 2019 at 10:30 AM

        That makes sense! Haha, good luck!

  14. Sophia (Bookwyrming Thoughts)

    January 21, 2019 at 12:32 PM

    Oooooo you’re in for a treat with Want and Forest of a Thousand Lanterns! I think I mentioned FoTL drags before it gets to the good and dark part with much blood and evilness, though. I also see Ignite the Stars and I may wink wink nudge nudge that I have a copy of the book and we can definitely BR the book together. ๐Ÿ˜‰

    I’m personally not participating simply because I feel it will be too much on my part and it will likely result in me abandoning the challenge. But there are LOTS of great Asian releases this year and I have ARCs to some of them, so I am EXCITEDTH and will attempt getting my bookwyrm claws on them from the library. *promptly puts a hold on a book that’s releasing in May because DIBS*

    1. Kaleena @ Reader Voracious

      January 24, 2019 at 8:56 AM

      I am really excited to read Want, I am hoping to read it before the sequel comes out in a couple of months~! I would love to BR Ignite the Stars with you!

  15. Isabelle @ BookwyrmBites

    January 21, 2019 at 7:23 PM

    queen of spreadsheets ๐Ÿ‘‘ these covers are all gorgeous and I’ve heard the contents are too! I haven’t officially committed to YARC because the new semester has me just a bit stressed out with everything I want to do, but almost all of these books are on my TBR (and obviously gotta support Asian authors since I’m Asian-American myself!) so I may end up sliding in later this year to claim some of those adorable badges ๐Ÿ˜

    1. Kaleena @ Reader Voracious

      January 24, 2019 at 8:57 AM

      *bows* Honestly though, I just gotta stay consistent with my brand! All these covers are beautiful and I love that they grace my shelves, and am really excited for them! Good luck with your school stuff and hopefully later you can join in!

  16. Kathy @ Books & Munches

    January 22, 2019 at 2:18 AM

    I’m going to unofficially participate since nobody knows how much I’ll be able to read – let alone Asian authors – but I did add a column in my [your, haha] spreadsheet to check whenever I read a book by an Asian author so there’s that! ๐Ÿ˜€
    Already have two ticked off – YAY.

    1. Kaleena @ Reader Voracious

      January 24, 2019 at 8:58 AM

      YAY for already reading 2 books by Asian authors! Unofficial participation is fun too, and the great thing is you can get a badge for reading one book… winner!

      1. Kathy @ Books & Munches

        January 25, 2019 at 12:44 AM

        Hahah, I already succeeded! YAY ME!
        I might end up making it official anyway. If only so I can post a list with all the books by Asian authors I still have on my TBR and such. :’) We’ll see! The moment my pregnancy leave starts, I’ll end up in blog prep mode and be all over things like this.. Probably.. Knowing me..

        1. Kaleena @ Reader Voracious

          January 28, 2019 at 10:57 AM

          Winner winner!
          Definitely support you making an owned tbr like mine! You may not have time to read them all but that’s okay!

          1. Kathy @ Books & Munches

            January 28, 2019 at 11:15 AM

            I’m actually doing it RIGHT NOW, haha!

  17. Charvi

    January 22, 2019 at 8:11 AM

    I’m participating too! A lot of the books I want to read are on your TBR as well ๐Ÿ˜Š
    I don’t have an official TBR but like a semi-official list of books I want to read since I’m such a huge mood reader ๐Ÿ˜

    1. Kaleena @ Reader Voracious

      January 25, 2019 at 9:53 AM

      I am also a mood reader, so I figured it would be best to just be like “I OWN THESE AND WANT TO READ THEM”. 12 months to do it!

  18. Marie

    January 23, 2019 at 11:19 AM

    This is such a great TBR and we have books in common! I can’t wait to read Want and Girls of Paper and Fire, and I’m so curious about City of Brass as well ๐Ÿ˜€
    Happy reading and best of luck for the challenge ๐Ÿ˜€

    1. Kaleena @ Reader Voracious

      January 25, 2019 at 10:10 AM

      Thank you so much Marie, and I am really hoping to read Want soon because the sequel comes out soon. Happy reading as well, love!

  19. Michelle

    January 23, 2019 at 12:13 PM

    Oh this sounds awesome! I actually just got a copy of The Gilded Wolves and there are still a few books in my bookcase by Asian authors. Definitely going to give it a try!

    1. Kaleena @ Reader Voracious

      January 25, 2019 at 10:12 AM

      Definitely give it a try, you can easily earn the first badge because it just requires one book read! Happy reading, Michelle!

  20. sammers65

    January 23, 2019 at 2:34 PM

    THIS SOUNDS AMAZING! I personally wont be doing the challenge simply because I don’t think I will have enough time this year to get to all of them, but I am certainly going to participate from the sidelines at my snail pace! Can’t wait to see your thoughts on all of these amazing books!

    1. Kaleena @ Reader Voracious

      January 25, 2019 at 10:20 AM

      YAY thanks for your support and happy reading, Sam!

  21. Lili Star Reads

    January 25, 2019 at 5:28 AM

    That is such an awesome TBR, I loved Girls of Paper and Fire. Your spreadsheets are amazing btw!

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  24. Sophie Li

    February 7, 2019 at 9:25 PM

    Hello Kaleena!
    You just reminded me that Girls of Paper and Fire is a book that I really need to read for the YARC challenge as well. Looking forward to hearing your thoughts about that one. I also really enjoyed Warcross- Hope that you will like this book as well ๐Ÿ™‚

    1. Kaleena @ Reader Voracious

      February 9, 2019 at 8:37 AM

      Hi Sophie, and yay for Girls of Paper and Fire! I hope we both enjoy reading it! Thanks so much for your comment, and I hope I enjoy Warcross, too.

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