Our Friend is Here! Asian Heritage Month Edition – An Interview with Adiba Jaigirdar, Author of The Henna Wars; On The Intersections of Queer & Muslim Identity, and Cultural Appreciation versus Appropriation

Our Friend is Here: Asian Heritage Month Edition. Author Interview with Adiba Jaigirdar, author of The Henna Wars; on the intersections of queer and muslim identity, and cultural appropriation and appreciation. illustration shows xiaolong the axolotl, her arms out wide as if she is showing off something, with adiba has a hijabi duckling wearing a red backpack, waving at you.

Our Friend is Hereis a guest feature at The Quiet Pond, where authors, creatives, and fellow readers, are invited to ‘visit’ the Pond! In Our Friend is Here! guest posts, our visitors (as their very own unique character!) have a friendly conversation about anything related to books or being a reader — and become friends with Xiaolong and friends.

Asian Heritage Month Edition is a month-long event at The Quiet Pond, where Asian authors and bookish content creators are invited to celebrate being Asian, Asian books, and the experiences of being an Asian reader. (Note: Here is an explanation of why we are calling this guest series ‘Asian Heritage Month’.)

When Adiba reached out to me and invited me to participate in her virtual launch for The Henna Wars, I was over the moon. I’ve been buzzing with excitement for Adiba’s debut, The Henna Wars and I’m delighted that it releases today. Although I couldn’t contribute by hosting a live chat, I knew I absolutely had to invite Adiba to the Pond again following her previous visit alongside the contributing authors of the Keep Faith anthology!

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Our Friend is Here! Asian Heritage Month Edition – Tashie Bhuiyan, Author of Counting Down With You, Shares Her Love Letter to Writing One’s Culture and Identity

Our Friend is Here: Asian Heritage Month Edition. Author interview with Lyla Lee, author of the Mindy Kim series; on the inspiration behind mindy kim and writing in korean culture. illustration of xiaolong the axolotl, her arms out wide as if she is showing off something, with tashie bhuiyan as a gray and gold fox holding a burrito bowl

Our Friend is Hereis a guest feature at The Quiet Pond, where authors, creatives, and fellow readers, are invited to ‘visit’ the Pond! In Our Friend is Here! guest posts, our visitors (as their very own unique character!) have a friendly conversation about anything related to books or being a reader — and become friends with Xiaolong and friends.

Asian Heritage Month Edition is a month-long event at The Quiet Pond, where Asian authors and bookish content creators are invited to celebrate being Asian, Asian books, and the experiences of being an Asian reader. (Note: Here is an explanation of why we are calling this guest series ‘Asian Heritage Month’.)

If you know me, you may have already heard me say that the YA contemporary scene has been nothing short of phenomenal. What I love even more though, is when a story centers on Asian teens who fall in love. With the likes of Love from A to Z (about two Muslim teens who meet and fall in love and explores the magic of fate and chance) and I Love You So Mochi (about a Japanese-American teen who visits her grandparents in Japan to figure out what she wants to do with her life – and falls in love with a Japanese teen who dresses up as a mochi mascot!), I’ll always be here for more stories about Asian teens who find joy and happiness.  Read More »

Our Friend is Here! Asian Heritage Month Edition – An Interview with Emery Lee, Author of Meet Cute Diary; On Eir Writing Journey, Trans Characters and Trans Joy

Our Friend is Here! Asian Heritage Month Edition: Author Interview with Emery Lee, author of meet cute diary; on eir writing journey and writing trans characters and trans joy

Our Friend is Hereis a guest feature at The Quiet Pond, where authors, creatives, and fellow readers, are invited to ‘visit’ the Pond! In Our Friend is Here! guest posts, our visitors (as their very own unique character!) have a friendly conversation about anything related to books or being a reader — and become friends with Xiaolong and friends.

Asian Heritage Month Edition is a month-long event at The Quiet Pond, where Asian authors and bookish content creators are invited to celebrate being Asian, Asian books, and the experiences of being an Asian reader. (Note: Here is an explanation of why we are calling this guest series ‘Asian Heritage Month’.)

Last year when I hosted fourteen authors at the Pond to promote the Keep Faith anthology, one of the authors that I hosted was Emery Lee. Back then, I told Emery that one day, I would have em back at the Pond one day to feature eir own book. You can imagine then, friends, why I feel like today’s Our Friend is Here: Asian Heritage Month Edition post feels particularly special to me.
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Our Friend is Here! Asian Heritage Month Edition – An Interview with Xiran Jay Zhao, Author of Iron Widow; On Feminist Fantasy, Giant Robots, & Diaspora Worldbuilding

Our Friend is Here! Asian Heritage Month Edition: Author Interview with Xiran Jay Zhao, author of Iron Widow, on feminist fantasy, giant robots, and diaspora worldbuilding. illustration is of sprout the sparrow, their wings wide like they are showing off something, with xiran as a yellow cat, wearing a black dress with red lace, and wearing a cow hoodie.

Our Friend is Hereis a guest feature at The Quiet Pond, where authors, creatives, and fellow readers, are invited to ‘visit’ the Pond! In Our Friend is Here! guest posts, our visitors (as their very own unique character!) have a friendly conversation about anything related to books or being a reader — and become friends with Xiaolong and friends.

Asian Heritage Month Edition is a month-long event at The Quiet Pond, where Asian authors and bookish content creators are invited to celebrate being Asian, Asian books, and the experiences of being an Asian reader. (Note: Here is an explanation of why we are calling this guest series ‘Asian Heritage Month’.)

When I saw the pitch for Xiran Jay Zhao’s upcoming book Iron Widow, I was immediately taken aback by how unabashedly anime-inspired it felt, from its fundamental premise (hello, giant mechas) to its hints at deeper underlying themes—themes like teenage angst, sexuality, and the messy reality of coming of age. I think some of the most moving stories today are best told through—have been told through—the medium of animation, and I’m beyond excited to be able to talk to a writer today on the blog who also harbors the same fondness I do for stories that use grand worldbuilding to tell stories that hit close to the heart.

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Our Friend is Here! Asian Heritage Month Edition – An Interview with Wai Chim, Author of The Surprising Power of a Good Dumpling; On Writing Histories, Diaspora Families, and Mental Illnesses

Our Friend is here, asian heritage edition. author interview with wai chim, author of the surprising power of a good dumpling, on writing histories and mental illness. illustration depicts xiaolong the axolotl with her arms wide, showing off wai chim as a quokka, giving a wink and wearing big round glasses

Our Friend is Hereis a guest feature at The Quiet Pond, where authors, creatives, and fellow readers, are invited to ‘visit’ the Pond! In Our Friend is Here! guest posts, our visitors (as their very own unique character!) have a friendly conversation about anything related to books or being a reader — and become friends with Xiaolong and friends.

Asian Heritage Month Edition is a month-long event at The Quiet Pond, where Asian authors and bookish content creators are invited to celebrate being Asian, Asian books, and the experiences of being an Asian reader. (Note: Here is an explanation of why we are calling this guest series ‘Asian Heritage Month’.)

Last year, I had the privilege of being given an advanced reader’s copy of one of my favourite books of all time. At the time, I had no idea that I had received a book that would soon find its way into my soul, tell a story that would make me feel vulnerable and raw, and would make me firmly believe that it is one of the most important young adult stories for teens, especially Asian teens, today. Read More »