Book Riot's Read Harder Challenge discussion

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2019 Read Harder Challenge > Task #8: An #ownvoices book set in Oceania

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message 1: by Book Riot (new)

Book Riot Community (book_riot) | 405 comments Mod
Use this space to discuss books you're reading or that might fit the 8th Read Harder task.


message 2: by Eujean2 (new)

Eujean2 | 34 comments I highly recommend The Whale Rider.


message 3: by Roxana (new)

Roxana (luminate) | 5 comments I haven't read anything by her yet so this isn't a recommendation necessarily, but I'll probably read something by Randa Abdel-Fattah - she's a Muslim Australian writer whose books seem to usually be about Muslim Australian girls.


message 5: by Variablestar (new)

Variablestar | 11 comments What about Jane Harper? Already read the Dry. Force of Nature on my TBR list


message 6: by Kate (last edited Dec 17, 2018 05:47PM) (new)

Kate | 116 comments I haven't read The Dry so I'm not sure what the characters are like, but I don't think Jane Harper would work for #ownvoices. She is originally from the UK and appears to be white. Personally I think a book to fit this category would need to be about indigenous people of Oceania, by an indigenous person from Oceania, but I'm curious about whether Randa Abdal-Fattah would be considered acceptable. Though she doesn't write about indigenous people, she does write about marginalized populations in Australia.

This is a category I'm going to save until later in the year, when BookRiot and the community have curated lists to pick from. I admit I don't know much about literature from Oceania, apart from having an enjoyment for contemporary Australian YA, which would not be appropriate for this category.


message 7: by Jane (new)

Jane (janojanojano) | 3 comments Jane Harper wouldn't work, I agree.

You could go beyond Australia/NZ although My Place and Whale Rider mentioned above are great choices, as well as The Swan Book or Carpentaria by Alexis Wright, an Australian Indigenous author.

I've found Rangoli by Pavana Reddy from Fiji, or the Telesa series by Lani Wendt Young from Samoa. I think I'll read the Telesa one for this task.


message 8: by Allison ༻hikes the bookwoods༺ (last edited Dec 18, 2018 06:42AM) (new)


message 9: by Stine (new)

Stine Hopsdal | 19 comments I think I'm broadening this one, to my current choice Taijiku, if I don't find anything more interesting.

It's set somewhere in (on?) the Pacific Rim (check for the Oseania part), and the MC is lesbian, the same as the author (check for the #ownvoices)


message 10: by Jordan (new)

Jordan (justiceofkalr) | 27 comments Looking for something sci-fi or fantasy if anyone has any suggestions. I found The Interrogation of Ashala Wolf, but it's unclear, based on what I can find, whether it's actually based in Oceania.


message 11: by Tracy (new)


message 12: by Satrina (new)

Satrina T | 37 comments I'm reading Māori Boy: A Memoir of Childhood by Witi Ihimaera


message 13: by Cristy (new)

Cristy (cristy_n) | 30 comments Allison ༻hikes the bookwoods༺ wrote: "Some of the titles I'm considering for this task:


I read The Bone People for this year's Read Harder and it was fantastic and heartbreaking. Recommended.


message 14: by Tabitha (new)

Tabitha D (windmillstilt) | 49 comments Still seeking a book for this challenge. So far a couple intrigue me, but nothing has jumped out and grabbed me. Any options for sci-fi, fantasy, historical fiction, or even romance? Adult or YA doesn't matter to me.


Allison ༻hikes the bookwoods༺ (allisonhikesthebookwoods) | 23 comments Good to know @Cristy! I think it will be my choice.


message 16: by Emma (new)

Emma | 32 comments The Wind City is by a NZ author, but I don't know if it would work for own voices.


message 17: by Serendipity (new)

Serendipity | 17 comments Emma, it sounds like The Wind City draws a lot on Maori culture, but the author is definitley not Maori. I'm not sure if any of the characters come from other marginalised groups and whether the author is also a member of those groups. Obviously she's female and it sounds like one of the characters is female. I don't recall hearing about this book before and haven't been able to find much about it or the author but what I have found doesn't scream #own voices to me.


message 18: by Allie (new)

Allie (allieeveryday) Do we think Lucy and Linh would count?


message 19: by Judith (new)

Judith Rich | 77 comments Tracy wrote: "Samoa-Where We Once Belonged"

I'd second that recommendation. Also "Frangipani" by Celestine Hitiura Vaite. I think she would count - she is mixed race French/Tahitian but grew up solely with her Tahitian family. As Tahiti is technically part of France, I think she'd be #ownvoices (although I have to say this concept is new to me)?


message 20: by Teresa (new)

Teresa | 337 comments IIllumine Her by Sieni A.M. is a romance set in Samoa, it might interest someone.
I'll probably read The Shark Caller, a middle grade fantasy set in Papua New Guinea or The Light Between Oceans, a historical fiction set in Australia.


message 21: by Susanne (new)

Susanne | 48 comments Allie wrote: "Do we think Lucy and Linh would count?"

It seems that both the main character Lucy and the author Alice Pung are children of refugees who have fled to Australia (one from Vietnam, the other from Cambodia), and both families are ethnic Teochew Chinese. I think it counts!


message 22: by Brandy (new)

Brandy Shark | 8 comments Consider some Hawaiian based novels: Goodreads list. Here's a Several of the authors are Hawaiian or Polynesian, like Kaui Hart Hemmings, Lois-Ann Yamanaka, and Kiana Davenport.

And I did double check worldatlas.com, Hawaii is considered part of Oceania, even though it's part of the United States.


message 23: by Lianne (new)

Lianne Burwell (lianneb) | 46 comments If anyone wants fantasy, Weather Child by Philippa Ballantine (New Zealand author now living in the US) is interesting. It involves a New Zealand where people born there can develop powers, and soldiers coming home from WWI.


message 25: by Kate (new)

Kate | 116 comments Teresa wrote: "IIllumine Her by Sieni A.M. is a romance set in Samoa, it might interest someone.
I'll probably read The Shark Caller, a middle grade fantasy set in..."


I don't know if The Light Between Oceans would work - I am pretty sure this is by a white author and about a white experience.


message 26: by Teresa (new)

Teresa | 337 comments Good point. Sometimes I get so excited looking for books, I forget details.


message 27: by Tabitha (last edited Dec 22, 2018 07:16PM) (new)

Tabitha D (windmillstilt) | 49 comments Melissa Lucashenko came up on a list and seems to have a number of books that could fit like Too Much Lip or Steam Pigs. . . Those are two I read the blurbs for though others could fit.

Indigenous Literature List

Indigenous Australian Literature

Think I'm going with The Swan Book.


message 28: by Lyssa131330 (new)

Lyssa131330 | 4 comments I found this list for those looking to do Australia https://www.naomiarnold.com/indigenou...


message 29: by Amber (new)

Amber | 34 comments Does The Bone People work?


message 30: by Becky (new)

Becky Rivensworth | 7 comments Does Big Little Lies work for this? The author is Australian, and the book is set in Australia, but I'm not sure that it really meets the #ownvoice part?


message 31: by Emma (new)

Emma | 32 comments Serendipity wrote: "Emma, it sounds like The Wind City draws a lot on Maori culture, but the author is definitley not Maori. I'm not sure if any of the characters come from other marginalised groups and whether the au..."

Thank you! This prompt is going to be one of the harder ones for RH.


message 32: by Gail (new)

Gail | 9 comments Jordan wrote: "Looking for something sci-fi or fantasy if anyone has any suggestions. I found The Interrogation of Ashala Wolf, but it's unclear, based on what I can find, whether it's actually ba..."

I think I'm going to read The Sea Is Ours: Tales from Steampunk Southeast Asia for this.


message 33: by Susanne (last edited Dec 24, 2018 02:53PM) (new)

Susanne | 48 comments Gail wrote: "Jordan wrote: "Looking for something sci-fi or fantasy if anyone has any suggestions. I found The Interrogation of Ashala Wolf, but it's unclear, based on what I can find, whether i..."

I'm sorry, I don't want to spoil The Sea Is Ours: Tales from Steampunk Southeast Asia, it sounds like a really nice book, but Southeast Asia and Oceania hardly overlap, only in West New Guinea and some smaller islands, if I interpret Wikipedia correctly.


message 34: by Gail (new)

Gail | 9 comments Hmm, yeah I think I misread the list. Oh well.


message 35: by Hope (new)

Hope How about this one? Under the Wintamarra Tree


message 36: by Cristy (new)

Cristy (cristy_n) | 30 comments Still personally struggling with the two #ownvoices tasks but I've just found the David Unaipon Award list which is awarded to previously unpublished indigenous authors in Australia. Hoping for something that fits all the criteria in here.


message 37: by Hebah (new)

Hebah (quietdissident) | 30 comments I found a great piece that gives a few #ownvoices titles as well as links out to other sites with additional info. This might be a handy category to also nab the fewer than 100 reviews task.

https://thecourseofevents.wordpress.c...


message 38: by Yrinsyde (new)

Yrinsyde | 125 comments Becky wrote: "Does Big Little Lies work for this? The author is Australian, and the book is set in Australia, but I'm not sure that it really meets the #ownvoice part?"

No, the author is not indigenous.


message 39: by Bonnie G. (new)

Bonnie G. (narshkite) | 1306 comments Yrinsyde wrote: "Becky wrote: "Does Big Little Lies work for this? The author is Australian, and the book is set in Australia, but I'm not sure that it really meets the #ownvoice part?"

No, the aut..."


There is no requirement that the author be indigenous just part of a marginalized group.


message 40: by Ady (new)

Ady (adyreader) Hebah wrote: "I found a great piece that gives a few #ownvoices titles as well as links out to other sites with additional info. This might be a handy category to also nab the fewer than 100 reviews task.

https..."


This list was very helpful. I am very interested in My Urohs. It is a book of poetry.


message 41: by Bonnie G. (last edited Dec 30, 2018 11:27PM) (new)

Bonnie G. (narshkite) | 1306 comments I have a friend who is an indigenous Aussie so I asked for suggestions, and here are her picks:

The Happiest Refugee - Anh Do (immigration, refugees, race)
The Family Law - Benjamin Law (race, LGBTQI)
The Hate Race - Maxine Beneba Clarke (race)
A Mother’s Story - Rosie Batty (domestic violence, violence against women)
The Trauma Cleaner - Sarah Krasnostein (feminism, trans rights)
Yassmin’s Story - Yassmin Abdel-Magied (race, Islamaphobia, feminism)
No Friend But the Mountains: Writing from Manus Prison - Behrouz Boochani (race, refugees, immigration)
The Swan Book - Alexis Wright (race, indigenous issues, environment)


message 42: by Tamara (last edited Dec 30, 2018 11:55PM) (new)

Tamara | 23 comments Patricia Grace is a splendid Māori author, and nearly all of her works would fit into this ownvoices category. I especially enjoyed the novel Cousins, but she has so many more to choose from.

Edited to add: I've just come across the perfect book for me, "The Imaginary Lives of James Poneke" by Tina Makereti. The book would not only work in this category, but also as a crossover with Alternate History: http://www.massey.ac.nz/massey/about-...

I've just asked my local library if they will order it.


message 43: by Wyn (new)

Wyn (miz_b) | 2 comments Does anyone know if Lee Murray's book Into the Mist would work? I can't find a decent bio of her.


message 44: by Yuna (new)

Yuna | 4 comments I'm planning on reading One Boy, No Water

Interview with the author here implies it's #ownvoices (as Corinne Duyvis intended the hashtag to be used). https://talesfrompasifika.com/2015/02...

I read The Bone People by Keri Hulme this year and agree with previous rec's that it's likely an #ownvoices book. Fair warning though that it has some fairly graphic (and rampant) child abuse.


message 45: by David (new)

David (bullbar) | 1 comments For this I'm going to read The Swan Book http://www.goodreads.com/book/show/18...


message 46: by Tracie Margaret (new)

Tracie Margaret | 12 comments Emma wrote: "Serendipity wrote: "Emma, it sounds like The Wind City draws a lot on Maori culture, but the author is definitley not Maori. I'm not sure if any of the characters come from other marginalised group..."

Wind City is heavily based around Maori mythology and has LGBT+ characters.


message 47: by Lucia (new)

Lucia Kelly | 45 comments Judith wrote: "Tracy wrote: "Samoa-Where We Once Belonged"

I'd second that recommendation. Also "Frangipani" by Celestine Hitiura Vaite. I think she would count - she is mixed race French/Tahitian ..."


I'm not sure the Light between oceans would count. As far as I know both author and protagonists are white and the story doesn't explore lgbt ...


message 48: by Lucia (new)

Lucia Kelly | 45 comments Hi there! I'm compiling lists of everyone's suggestions for the challenges in case that's easier for people (i know it is for me!) c:

https://www.goodreads.com/list/show/1...


message 49: by Audra (new)

Audra (themonkeygirl) | 46 comments I'm struggling with this one. Nothing is peaking my interest today. Maybe when I actually get to this, one of the above mentioned books will hit me. But today I'm wondering if I could do something silly like a Liane Moriarty book for this?


message 50: by Stina (new)

Stina (stinalyn) | 176 comments Audra wrote: "I'm struggling with this one. Nothing is peaking my interest today. Maybe when I actually get to this, one of the above mentioned books will hit me. But today I'm wondering if I could do something ..."

Somebody please correct me if I'm wrong, but I'm fairly certain Liane Moriarty is not a member of a marginalized group. Unless you count all women as marginalized, which I feel is a stretch for the spirit of this prompt. AFAICT, she's a straight white lady who writes about the straight white lady experience.

I enjoy her books, though, so if I'm wrong, and she *does* count, please tell me! :-)


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