LIST: ya romances with asian character(s)

ya romances with asian character(s) banner

I originally wrote this post on Tumblr 3 years ago (oh my god, 3 years ago…) and added to it 2 years ago. It’s been one of my most popular posts there, and honestly it has been long overdue to post it here, so why not post it during AAPI Appreciation month? So here’s a list of YA books with Asian characters with romances!

TABLE OF CONTENTS

* This is a link to my affiliate shop on Bookshop. I will earn a commission if you click through and make a purchase from this shop.

bold = romance is a prominent aspect of the story
🌈 = LGBTQ romance
* = non-Asian author / author not of Asian descent

CONTEMPORARY

bookromanceauthor info
The Charmed List
by Julie Abe
(read my review here)
Japanese-American protagonist and love interestJapanese-American author
Love from A to Z
by S.K. Ali
Muslim biracial (Chinese, white) protagonist, Muslim Pakistani/Guyanese/Trinidadian-American protagonistMuslim author
Sister of the Bollywood Bride
by Nandini Bajpai
Indian-American protagonist, Indian love interestIndian author
Salaam, with Love
by Sara Sharaf Beg
Muslim Pakistani-American protagonist and love interestMuslim Pakistani-American author
The Beauty of the Moment
by Tanaz Bhathena
(read my review here)
Indian (Malayali)-Canadian protagonist, Indian (Parsi) protagonistIndian author
Counting Down with You
by Tashie Bhuiyan
(read my review here)
Muslim Bangladeshi-American protagonist, biracial (Chinese, white) love interestMuslim Bangladeshi-American author
A Show for Two
by Tashie Bhuiyan
(read my review here)
Muslim Bangladeshi-American protagonist, biracial (Chinese, white) love interestMuslim Bangladeshi-American author
Starfish
by Akemi Dawn Bowman
(read my review here)
biracial (Japanese, white) protagonist, white love interestbiracial (Japanese, white) author
Harley in the Sky
by Akemi Dawn Bowman
(read my review here)
multiracial (Chinese, Irish, Japanese, Italian) protagonist, biracial (Russian, white) love interestbiracial (Japanese, white) author
One True Loves (Happily Ever Afters #2)
by Elise Bryant *
Black protagonist, biracial (Black, Korean) love interestBlack author
American Panda
by Gloria Chao
(read my review here)
Taiwanese-American protagonist, Japanese-American love interestTaiwanese-American author
Our Wayward Fate
by Gloria Chao
Taiwanese-American protagonist and love interestTaiwanese-American author
Rent a Boyfriend
by Gloria Chao
Taiwanese-American protagonistsTaiwanese-American author
When You Wish Upon a Lantern
by Gloria Chao
(out February 14, 2023)
Taiwanese-American protagonist and love interestTaiwanese-American author
Tiny Pretty Things
by Sona Charaipotra and Dhonielle Clayton *
(cw: anorexia, bulimia)
biracial (Korean, white) protagonist, Korean-American love interestIndian-American author, Black author
Symptoms of a Heartbreak
by Sona Charaipotra
Indian-American protagonist, white love interestIndian-American author
North of Beautiful
by Justina Chen
(cw: parental abuse (verbal))
white protagonist, adopted Chinese-American love interestChinese-American author
Once Upon a K-Prom
by Kat Cho
(read my review here)
Korean-American protagonist, Korean love interestKorean-American author
Prom Queen Perfect
by Clarisse David
Filipino protagonist and love interestFilipino author
Keeping the Distance
by Clarisse David
Filipino protagonist and love interestFilipino author
Something In Between
by Melissa de la Cruz
Filipina-American protagonist, Mexican-American love interestFilipina-American author
Dating Makes Perfect
by Pintip Dunn
(read my review here)
Thai-American protagonist and love interestThai-American author
Fifteen Hundred Miles from the Sun
by Jonny Garza Villa *
(read my review here)
(cw: parental abuse (physical, mental), homophobia, outing, use of slurs)
gay Mexican-American protagonist, gay Vietnamese-American love interest
🌈 m/m
gay Mexican-American author
I Believe in a Thing Called Love
by Maurene Goo
(read my review here)
Korean-American protagonist, white love interestKorean-American author
The Way You Make Me Feel
by Maurene Goo
Korean-American protagonist, Chinese-American love interestKorean-American author
Somewhere Only We Know
by Maurene Goo
(read my review here)
Korean-American protagonistsKorean-American author
To All the Boys I’ve Loved Before
by Jenny Han
biracial (Korean, white) protagonist, white love interestKorean-American author
The Jasmine Project
by Meredith Ireland
(read my review here)
adopted Korean-American protagonist, biracial (Indian, white) love interestadopted Korean-American author
Everyone Hates Kelsie Miller
by Meredith Ireland
(out October 11, 2022)
adopted, demisexual Korean-American protagonist, Latine love interest
🌈 f/m
adopted, demisexual Korean-American author
The Henna Wars
by Adiba Jaigirdar
(read my review here)
Muslim lesbian Bengali-Irish protagonist, bisexual biracial (Afro-Brazilian, Irish) love interest
🌈 f/f
queer Muslim Bengali-Irish author
Hani and Ishu’s Guide to Fake Dating
by Adiba Jaigirdar
Muslim bisexual Bangladeshi-Bengali protagonist, queer Indian-Bengali protagonist
🌈 f/f
queer Muslim Bengali-Irish author
Tokyo Ever After
by Emiko Jean
Japanese-American protagonist, Japanese love interestJapanese-American author
Jay’s Gay Agenda
by Jason June *
gay white protagonist, gay Chinese-American love interest
🌈 m/m
white genderqueer author
We Are Totally Normal
by Rahul Kanakia
questioning Indian-American protagonist, Chinese-American love interest
🌈 m/m
Indian-American author
Zara Hossain Is Here
by Sabina Khan
(cw: racism, Islamophobia, xenophobia, gun violence, homophobia, biphobia)
Muslim Pakistani-American bisexual protagonist, lesbian love interest
🌈 f/f
Muslim Pakistani-American author
Kiss & Tell
by Adib Khorram
(read my review here)
gay white protagonist, gay Iranian-American love interest
🌈 m/m
gay Iranian-American author
I Love You So Mochi
by Sarah Kuhn
(read my review here)
Japanese-American protagonist, Japanese love interestJapanese-American author
From Little Tokyo, with Love
by Sarah Kuhn
(read my review here)
biracial (Japanese, white) protagonist, Japanese-American love interestbiracial (Japanese, white) author
A Pho Love Story
by Loan Le
(read my review here)
Vietnamese-American protagonistsVietnamese-American author
Meet Cute Diary
by Emery Lee
bisexual multiracial (Afro-Puerto Rican, Japanese, white) trans protagonist, queer love interestmultiracial trans author
CafΓ© Con Lychee
by Emery Lee
gay Chinese/Japanese-American protagonist, gay Puerto Rican protagonist
🌈 m/m
multiracial trans author
I’ll Be the One
by Lyla Lee
(read my review here)
plus-sized bisexual Korean-American protagonist, bisexual Korean love interest
🌈 f/m
bisexual Korean-American author
Flip the Script
by Lyla Lee
bisexual Korean-American protagonist, lesbian Korean love interest
🌈 f/f
bisexual Korean-American author
K-Pop Confidential
by Stephan Lee
Korean-American protagonist, Korean love interestKorean-American author
Seoulmates
by Susan Lee
(out September 20, 2022)
Korean-American protagonistsKorean-American author
If You Could See the Sun
by Ann Liang
(out October 11, 2022)
Chinese-American protagonist, Chinese love interestChinese-Australian author
This Time It’s Real
by Ann Liang
(out February 7, 2023)
Chinese protagonist and love interestChinese-Australian author
You Have a Match
by Emma Lord *
(read my review here)
white protagonist, adopted Filipino-American love interestwhite author
When You Get the Chance
by Emma Lord *
(read my review here)
white protagonist, Chinese-American love interestwhite author
Heartbreakers and Fakers
by Cameron Lund *
(read my review here)
white protagonist, Japanese-American love interestwhite author
All the Right Reasons
by Bethany Mangle
(read my review here)
biracial (Korean, white) protagonist, white love interestadopted Korean-American author
More Than Just a Pretty Face
by Syed M. Masood
Muslim Indian-American protagonist and love interestMuslim Indian-American author
When Dimple Met Rishi
by Sandhya Menon
Indian-American protagonistsIndian-American author
From Twinkle, with Love
by Sandhya Menon
Indian-American protagonistsIndian-American author
There’s Something About Sweetie
by Sandhya Menon
plus-sized Indian-American protagonist, Indian-American protagonistIndian-American author
10 Things I Hate About Pinky
by Sandhya Menon
(read my review here)
Indian-American protagonistsIndian-American author
Of Curses and Kisses
by Sandhya Menon
Indian protagonist, white protagonistIndian-American author
Fake It Till You Break It
by Jenn P. Nguyen
(read my review here)
Vietnamese-American protagonist, white protagonistVietnamese-American author
XOXO
by Axie Oh
Korean-American protagonist, Korean love interestKorean-American author
The Perfect Escape
by Suzanne Park
(read my review here)
Korean-American protagonist, white protagonistKorean-American author
The Christmas Clash
by Suzanne Park
(out October 4, 2022)
Korean-American protagonist, Chinese-American love interestKorean-American author
My Sister’s Big Fat Indian Wedding
by Sajni Patel
Indian-American protagonist, South African love interestIndian-American author
Not Here to Be Liked
by Michelle Quach
(read my review here)
Chinese-Vietnamese-American protagonist, biracial (Japanese, white) love interestChinese-Vietnamese-American author
She Drives Me Crazy
by Kelly Quindlen *
(read my review here)
lesbian white protagonist, lesbian Indian-American love interest
🌈 f/f
queer white author
Noteworthy
by Riley Redgate
bisexual Chinese-American protagonist, Japanese-American love interest
🌈 f/m
bisexual biracial (Chinese, white) author
Final Draft
by Riley Redgate
(read my review here)
pansexual biracial (Ecuadorian, white) protagonist, lesbian Korean-American love interest
🌈 f/f
bisexual biracial (Chinese, white) author
It All Comes Back to You
by Farah Naz Rishi
Muslim Pakistani-American protagonistsMuslim Pakistani-American author
Tell Me How You Really Feel
by Aminah Mae Safi
(read my review here)
Muslim wlw biracial (Bengali, Persian) protagonist, wlw Jewish Mexican-American protagonist
🌈 f/f
Muslim author
Don’t Read the Comments
by Eric Smith *
Indian-American protagonist, biracial (Honduran, Palestinian) protagonistadopted author of color
See You Yesterday
by Rachel Lynn Solomon *
(read my review here)
plus-size Jewish main character, Jewish Japanese-American love interestJewish author
It’s Not Like It’s a Secret
by Misa Sugiura
wlw Japanese-American protagonist, wlw Mexican-American love interest
🌈 f/f
Japanese-American author
Love and Other Natural Disasters
by Misa Sugiura
lesbian Japanese-American protagonist, lesbian Japanese-American love interest
🌈 f/f
Japanese-American author
Made in Korea
by Sarah Suk
(read my review here)
Korean-American protagonist and love interestKorean-Canadian author
Well, That Was Unexpected
by Jesse Q. Sutanto
(out September 27, 2022)
biracial (Chinese-Indonesian, white) protagonist, Indonesian protagonistChinese-Indonesian author
Dear Twin
by Addie Brook Tsai
queer Asian protagonist, biracial main character
🌈 f/f
queer Asian author
Beauty And The Besharam
by Lillie Vale
(read my review here)
Indian-American protagonist, Korean-American love interestIndian-American author
Loveboat, Taipei
by Abigail Hing Wen
(read my review here)
Chinese-American protagonist and love interestChinese-American author
Loveboat Reunion (Loveboat, Taipei #2)
by Abigail Hing Wen
Taiwanese-American protagonist, Chinese-American protagonist and side charactersChinese-American author
Always Never Yours
by Emily Wibberley * and Austin Siegemund-Broka *
white protagonist, Japanese-American love interestwhite authors
Cloudwish
by Fiona Wood *
Vietnamese-Australian protagonist, white love interestwhite author
A Taste for Love
by Jennifer Yen
(read my review here)
Taiwanese-American protagonist and love interestTaiwanese-American author
Love, Decoded
by Jennifer Yen
(read my review here)
Taiwanese-American protagonist, biracial (Chinese, white) love interestTaiwanese-American author
Frankly in Love
by David Yoon
Korean-American protagonist and love interestKorean-American rep
Super Fake Love Song
by David Yoon
Korean-American protagonist and love interestKorean-American rep
The Sun Is Also a Star
by Nicola Yoon *
Korean-American protagonist, Jamaican-American protagonistBlack author

HISTORICAL

bookromanceauthor info
Foul Lady Fortune (Foul Lady Fortune #1)
by Chloe Gong
(read my review here)
(out September 27, 2022)
demisexual Chinese protagonist, bisexual Chinese protagonist
🌈 f/m
Chinese-Kiwi author
The Red Palace
by June Hur
Korean protagonist and love interestKorean-Canadian author
Outrun the Moon
by Stacey Lee
Chinese-American protagonist and love interestChinese-American author
The Downstairs Girl
by Stacey Lee
(read my review here)
Chinese-American protagonist, white love interestChinese-American author
Last Night at the Telegraph Club
by Malinda Lo
Chinese-American lesbian protagonist, lesbian love interest
🌈 f/f
lesbian Chinese-American author
A Scatter of Light
by Malinda Lo
(out October 4, 2022)
bisexual biracial (Chinese, white) protagonist, butch lesbian love interest
🌈 f/f
lesbian Chinese-American author
A Very Large Expanse of Sea
by Tahereh Mafi
Muslim Iranian-American protagonist, white love interestMuslim Iranian-American author
What Souls Are Made Of: A Wuthering Heights Remix
by Tasha Suri
(read my review here)
British-Indian protagonistsBritish-Indian author

FANTASY

bookromanceauthor info
The Candle and the Flame
by Nafiza Azad
(read my review here)
Muslim Asian-coded protagonist, Asian-coded love interestMuslim Asian author
Girl, Serpent, Thorn
by Melissa Bashardoust
bisexual Persian-coded protagonist, wlw Persian-coded love interest
🌈 f/f
sapphic Persian author
Hunted by the Sky
by Tanaz Bhathena
(read my review here)
Indian-coded protagonistsIndian author
Violet Made of Thorns
by Gina Chen
(read my review here)
(out July 26, 2022)
East Asian-coded protagonist, white love interestChinese-American author
Wicked Fox
by Kat Cho
(read my review here)
Korean protagonistsKorean-American author
The Star-Touched Queen
by Roshani Chokshi
Indian protagonist and love interestbiracial (Indian, Filipino) author
A Crown of Wishes
by Roshani Chokshi
Indian protagonistsbiracial (Indian, Filipino) author
The Gilded Wolves
by Roshani Chokshi
(read my reviews of book one, book two, and book three)
Indian protagonist, biracial (Algerian, French) protagonist; mlm biracial (Filipino, Spanish) protagonist, mlm biracial (Haitian, French) main character
🌈 m/m
biracial (Indian, Filipino) author
Song of the Crimson Flower
by Julie C. Dao
(read my review here)
Vietnamese-coded protagonistsVietnamese author
These Violent Delights
by Chloe Gong
(read my reviews of book one and book two)
Chinese protagonist, Russian protagonistChinese-Kiwi author
Descendant of the Crane
by Joan He
(read my review here)
Chinese-coded protagonist and love interestChinese-American author
The Girl from Everywhere
by Heidi Heilig
biracial (Chinese, white) protagonist, Persian love interestbiracial (Chinese, white) author
Only a Monster
by Vanessa Len
(read my review here)
biracial (Chinese-Malaysian, white) protagonist, white love interest(s)biracial (Chinese-Malaysian, Maltese) author
Spin the Dawn
by Elizabeth Lim
(read my review here)
Chinese-coded protagonist and love interestChinese-American author
Six Crimson Cranes
by Elizabeth Lim
Chinese-coded protagonist and love interestChinese-American author
A Magic Steeped in Poison
by Judy I. Lin
(read my review here)
Chinese-coded protagonist and love interestTaiwanese-Canadian author
When the Moon Was Ours
by Anna-Marie McLemore *
trans Pakistani-American protagonist, Latinx-American protagonist
🌈 trans boy/f
queer trans Mexican-American author
This Woven Kingdom
by Tahereh Mafi
Persian-coded protagonist and love interestMuslim Iranian-American author
Gearbreakers
by Zoe Hana Mikuta
(read my review here)
bisexual Korean-coded protagonist, wlw Korean-coded love interest
🌈 f/f
sapphic biracial (Korean, white) author
Girls of Paper and Fire
by Natasha Ngan
(read my reviews of book one and book two)
Asian-coded protagonist and love interest
🌈 f/f
sapphic biracial (Chinese Malaysian, white) author
The Girl Who Fell Beneath the Sea
by Axie Oh
(read my review here)
Korean-coded protagonist and love interestKorean-American author
An Arrow to the Moon
by Emily X.R. Pan
Taiwanese-American protagonistsTaiwanese-American author
The Ivory Key
by Akshaya Raman
Indian-coded protagonist and love interestIndian-American author
The Heartless Divine
by Varsha Ravi
(read my review of book one and book two)
Indian (Tamil)-coded protagonist and love interestTamil-American author
Jade Fire Gold
by June C.L. Tan
(read my review here)
Chinese-coded protagonistsSingaporean author
Star Daughter
by Shveta Thakrar
Indian-American protagonist and love interestIndian-American author
The Mermaid, the Witch, and the Sea
by Maggie Tokuda-Hall
(read my review here)
queer Japanese-coded protagonist, genderfluid Black protagonist
🌈 f/genderfluid
queer biracial (Japanese, white) author
Shatter the Sky
by Rebecca Kim Wells
(read my review here)
bisexual Asian-coded protagonist, wlw Asian-coded love interest
🌈 f/f
bisexual biracial (Korean, white) author
The Epic Crush of Genie Lo
by F.C. Yee
(read my reviews of book one and book two)
Chinese-American protagonist and love interestChinese-American author
The Rise of Kyoshi
by F.C. Yee
bisexual Asian-coded protagonist, sapphic Asian-coded love interest
🌈 f/f
Chinese-American author

SCIENCE FICTION

bookromanceownvoices for
The Darkest Legacy
by Alexandra Bracken *
(read my review here)
Japanese-American protagonist, white love interestwhite author
Not Your Sidekick
by C.B. Lee
bisexual biracial (Chinese, Vietnamese) protagonist, wlw white love interest
🌈 f/f
bisexual biracial (Chinese, Vietnamese) author
Rebel Seoul
by Axie Oh
Korean protagonist and main characterKorean-American author
Rogue Heart
by Axie Oh
Korean protagonist and main characterKorean-American author
Want
by Cindy Pon
(read my review here)
Taiwanese protagonist and love interestTaiwanese-American author
The Celestial Trilogy
by Sangu Mandanna
(read my reviews of book one, book two, and book three)
Indian-coded protagonist and love interestBritish Indian author
Iron Widow
by Xiran Jay Zhao
(read my review here)
bisexual, Chinese-coded protagonist and love interests
🌈 f/m/m
nonbinary Chinese author

Subscribe to my blog:


Save this post on Pinterest:

4 thoughts on “LIST: ya romances with asian character(s)”

  1. HAHAHAH @ “* Do not recommend me Eleanor and Park.” Honestly I bet someone would do that. Also, for some books that aren’t on here. We Are Totally Normal by Rahul Ranakia (Indian-American protagonist w/ Chinese-American love interest OV for Indian-American rep), Parachutes by Kelly Yang (Chinese protagonist, OV for Chinese rep but I’m not sure if the love interest is Asian), More Than Just a Pretty Face by Syed M. Masood (Indian-American Muslim protagonist and love interest, OV for both)

    Like

    1. when I had this post on tumblr, people recommended me that constantly as if I didn’t have knowledge of an immensely popular (racist) book smh and thank you!! I’ll add those rn

      Like

Comments are closed.