Asian Heritage Month is an opportunity for all Canadians to learn more about the rich history and contributions of Canadians of Asian descent that make Canada the amazing country we share. Our diversity is our strength.


Children’s Books

I Am Small by Qin Leng

Governor General Literary Award winner Qin Leng uses simple yet powerful images and gentle humour to underline that while young Mimi feels her height is a disadvantage she fits her world. Mimi’s newfound perspective at the arrival of her new sibling will spark conversations around personal development, self-respect and resilience.

Ming Goes to School by Deirdre Sullivan

A lovely going-to-school story that eases kids into starting preschool. While Ming is ready for adventure she still gets scared sometimes. Kids will relate to her excitement and fear and cheer her on at the top of the slide by the story's end.

Grandmother School by Rina Singh

Rina Singh’s picture book draws on a real-life school for older, illiterate women in India. It  shares the love between grandmother and granddaughter. Grandmother’s bedtime stories are as inspiring as the positive message of women’s empowerment in seeking literacy. 

The Library Bus by Bahram Rahman

Bahram Rahman relates the ingenuity of women during the Taliban regime. Charming illustrations capture Pari’s sense of adventure when she helps her mom who teaches girls to write English. This story celebrates women’s ingenuity in creating their own future.

Crane Boy by Diana Cohn

Social justice educator Diana Cohn’s picture book shares a story about a boy who wants to help save the cranes by dancing as a way to bring attention to their plight. The local monks advise him to learn from the canes and he studies them so he can present to the community in a festival devoted to ecological education


Adult Non-Fiction

Love & Courage: My Story of Family, Resilience and Overcoming the Unexpected by Jagmeet Singh

Canada’s first visible minority to lead a major federal political party calmly responds to a heckler’s disruption of a community meeting citing "love and courage" and it goes viral. In his memoir, Jagmeet Singh shares lessons learned on hardship, addiction, and exclusion. He roots his belief that strengthening the connection between us all is the way to building a better world in his family’s strength. 

David Suzuki: The Autobiography by David Suzuki

David Suzuki relates key events such as his childhood internment in a Canadian concentration camp during World War II and his troubled teenage years. He also reflects on his fame as a scientist, television host who meets key figures such as Nelson Mandela and the Dalai Lama. He attributes his success to the strength gleaned from the role nature and family play in his life.

The Year of Finding Memory by Judy Fong Bates

Canadian author Judy Fong Bates’ return to her ancestral home in China sparks a series of family discoveries. Learning about her family in this way requires her to probe her memory and reconcile conflicting truths. 

Not Yet: A Memoir of Living and Almost Dying by Wayson Choy

Order of Canada recipient Wayson Choy relates his brushes with death in this insightful commentary on the meaning of life. His other memoir entitled Paper Shadows: A Chinatown Childhood won the Edna Staebler Prize for Creative Non-Fiction.

Chop Suey Nation by Ann Hui

Globe and Mail reporter Ann Hui drives cross-country to write a culinary memoir about the history of “chop suey” restaurants and the families behind them in Canada.


Adult Fiction

The Conjoined by Jen Sookfong Lee

Popular Canadian radio celebrity Jen Sookfong Lee writes this Loan Star Favourite. The discovery of bodies in her mother’s basement kickstarts a compelling mystery about the tragic fate of a pair of foster sisters in Vancouver’s Chinatown.

All That Matters by Wayson Choy

Wayson Choy writes a prize-winning companion to his well-known debut The Jade Peony. In this novel, he revisits the family a generation earlier back in China prior to moving to Vancouver’s Chinatown before WWII. 

Midnight at the Dragon Cafe by Judy Fong Bates

Judy Fong Bates writes a stunning debut about a young girl who shoulders dark family secrets and struggles with divided loyalties in a small, isolated Ontario town in the 1950s at their family diner. 

Bloodletting & Miraculous Cures by Vincent Lam

Vincent Lam’s Scotiabank Giller Prize winner provides a realistic portrait of the gritty reality of medical students turned doctors dealing with moral challenges on many fronts such as emergency rooms and patient relationships.

Disappearing Moon Cafe by Sky Lee

Sky Lee’s award-winning novel combines magical realism with historical sweep in a tapestry that interweaves the pursuit of identity across three generations of women in the Asian-Canadian Wong family.

Learn more about it here, find authors here and CBC Books here.