2019 #YARC wrap up & 2020 plans

Text: YEAR OF THE ASIAN, A 2019 READING CHALLENGE. Hosted by C.W., Lily, Shealea, and Vicky. Image is of Xiaolong the pink axolotl wearing an upside down purple flower hat eating a bowl of rice.
Image credit to CW @ The Quiet Pond

Hello everyone! In today’s post, I’m going to share with you all the books I read for #YARC2019 and my plans for 2020.

So in case you missed it, starting from last year, CW, Vicky, Lily, and Shealea together created awesome reading challenge called Year of the Asian Reading Challenge (YARC). The aim of this challenge is to celebrate Asian authors and literature by reading as many books written by Asian authors as we can.

As an Asian, of course I couldn’t miss this opportunity and have to participate! Especially since reading and watching more Asian books/movies was one of my goal for 2019. This reading challenge couldn’t come at a better time and really did help me a lot throughout the year!

There were 6 different levels, represented by different animals from different parts of Asia. Since I aim for 12 books (one book per month), my badge was Indian Cobra although I did use Philippine tarsier as I hate (and t e r r i f i e d) of snakes πŸ™ˆ

But yeah, enough intro. Let’s see all the books I read for YARC in 2019!

All links will direct you to my reviews ✍

01. THE KITE RUNNER by Khaled Hosseini


02. A CROWN OF WISHES by Roshani Chokshi



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05. OUR WOMEN ON THE GROUND by Zahra Hankir

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07. MOONCAKES by Suzanne Walker and Wendy Xu

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08. THE ATHENA PROTOCOL by Shamim Sarif

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09-13. GHOST SCHOOL 1-5 by Kyomi Ogawa


So in total, I read 13 books- 8 novels and 5 mangas!

I would say I was a bit disappointed as it meant that I didn’t reach my goals of reading 12, full-length novel, for the year of 2019. I do have a lot of books on my TBR, but for some reason I just didn’t get to them. I’m still glad I read the books I read, especially since I enjoyed them all! But I do wish I read more and did better.

Year of the Asian, a 2020 Reading Challenge. Hosted by CW, Lily, Shealea, and Vicky

So now, let’s talk about my plan for YARC 2020!

Unfortunately, I don’t think I will be participating in YARC this year. I did have a great time reading Asian books in 2019, but I’m really terrible at keeping track, posting updates, and in general participate with the community. I didn’t realize how much I missed it until I read the announcement post 😭

Aside from the general terrible-ness in participating, 2020 is also going to be a VERY busy year for me. With bachelor’s thesis, defense, and graduation being the major things happening this year, I worry I will not have enough time to read. And let’s be honest, writing a thesis is already a huge pressure and I don’t want to add another weight to it.

I want 2020 to be a reading year where I truly read for pleasure. No ARCs, no deadlines, and no readathons. I do enjoyed them, but I have to admit that the pressure often gets to me.

But that doesn’t mean that I won’t be reading Asian books at all! One of my goal this year is actually to read more Indonesian literature. I just realized how ridiculous it is that I could read 87 foreign books each year and 0 local books. I do still want to read books from other authors, but I will try to make Indonesian authors as my priority.

So here are some Asian books I want to read this year:


Supernova by Dee Lestari

One of the most popular and critically acclaimed book series in Indonesia, I’ve long been curious of this book. Not only it was unconventional in which it talks about science fiction and magical realism, the inclusion of LGBTQ+ characters in this book really makes me wonder how come no one try to ban this book, especially since we are such a conservative country. Really curious on what makes this book so popular and universally loved.


Bumi Manusia (This Earth of Mankind) by Pramoedya Ananta Toer

A classic, this book tells the story of Minke, a javanese living in Indonesia that was the Dutch colonies. I don’t really know much aside from that, but considering the long history of colonization and how this book is constantly in a must-read list (along with a ban that was placed for Pramoedya’s books) makes me really REALLY want to read this book at least once.

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Dilan by Pidi Baiq

Indonesians, where you at? I couldn’t find an english version of this book, but this book took the teenagers by storm when it was first released. Told through the lens of Milea, this book told her romance with her boyfriend, Dilan, in the 1990s. Filled with cheesy moments and pick up lines that are even more cheesier on the movie (I got goosebumps the whole time watching it), I do want to read it and experience the cheesiness in all its glory.

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I’ll let you know if I survive.


The Black Tides of Heaven by J.Y Yang

Saw this in Singapore and been beating myself for not buying it at that time! It just sounds like such an epic adventure of sisterhood and Asian mythology.

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Everything I Never Told You by Celeste Ng

Actually, I already forget what is this book about. But I know it’s super popular and I do love the author’s other book, Little Fires Everywhere. So I won’t read the synopsis again and would let myself be surprised when I read it!

So that’s all for today! Did you participate in 2019? Did you reach your goal? Are you going to participate in 2020?




11 thoughts on “2019 #YARC wrap up & 2020 plans

  1. It looks like you still did well with YARC last year, even if you didn’t achieve all of your goals! πŸ’• It’s sad that you won’t be able to officially join this year, but I hope you still get to read many amazing Asian books πŸ™‚


  2. The Black Tides of Heaven is an incredible novella! I hope you’ll enjoy reading it. Good luck with your goal of reading more local authors! I should really do the same, because I barely ever read any Belgian authors (or even books in Dutch). It’s kind of sad to me that I am completely disregarding my own country and language…


  3. I also did YARC last year, despite the fact that I find it difficult to keep track of community reading challenges. Plus I’m a huge mood reader. Glad to hear you’re inspired to read more Indonesian booms this year though!


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