Star-crossed lovers, meddling immortals, feigned identities, battles of wits, and dire warnings: these are the stuff of fairy tale, myth, and folklore that have drawn us in for centuries.
Fifteen bestselling and acclaimed authors reimagine the folklore and mythology of East and South Asia in short stories that are by turns enchanting, heartbreaking, romantic, and passionate.
Compiled by We Need Diverse Books’s Ellen Oh and Elsie Chapman, the authors included in this exquisite collection are: Renée Ahdieh, Sona Charaipotra, Preeti Chhibber, Roshani Chokshi, Aliette de Bodard, Melissa de la Cruz, Julie Kagawa, Rahul Kanakia, Lori M. Lee, E. C. Myers, Cindy Pon, Aisha Saeed, Shveta Thakrar, and Alyssa Wong.
A mountain loses her heart. Two sisters transform into birds to escape captivity. A young man learns the true meaning of sacrifice. A young woman takes up her mother’s mantle and leads the dead to their final resting place.
From fantasy to science fiction to contemporary, from romance to tales of revenge, these stories will beguile readers from start to finish. For fans of Neil Gaiman’s Unnatural Creatures and Ameriie’s New York Times–bestselling Because You Love to Hate Me.
About the Author
Originally from New York City, Ellen Oh is the founder of We Need Diverse Books and the author of the Prophecy trilogy (Prophecy, Warrior, and King) for young adults. Spirit Hunters is her fourth book and her first for middle grade readers. A former adjunct college instructor and lawyer with an insatiable curiosity for ancient Asian history, Ellen lives in Bethesda, Maryland, with her husband and three daughters and has yet to satisfy her quest for a decent bagel. You can visit her online at www.ellenoh.com.
Sona Charaipotra & Dhonielle Clayton met while attending the New School’s acclaimed Writing for Children MFA program. Sona is a journalist who has written for the New York Times, People, Parade, Cosmopolitan, and other major media. Dhonielle is a librarian at a middle school in Harlem, and taught English at a cutthroat ballet academy. Together, the pair cofounded CAKE Literary, a boutique book packaging company with a decidedly diverse bent. Find them online at www.cakeliterary.com.
Melissa de la Cruz grew up in Manila and San Francisco. She is the author of the novels Cat's Meow (Scribner, 2001) and The Au Pairs (Simon & Schuster, 2004). She coauthored the nonfiction books How to Become Famous in Two Weeks or Less (Ballantine, 2003) and The Fashionista Files: Adventures in Four-Inch Heels and Faux Pas (Ballantine, 2004). Her work has been translated into many languages. She lives in Los Angeles with her husband.
Cindy Pon is the author of Silver Phoenix, named one of the top ten fantasy novels for youth by Booklist. She lives with her husband and two children in San Diego, California.
“Contrary to our Disney-fied expectations, not every story has a happy ending — yet another facet to this fine compilation that enhances its ability to surprise, intrigue and delight.”
— Chicago Tribune
“This collection fills a gap in modern retellings of fairy tales and myths by presenting non-European myths. ...Give to fans of Marissa Meyer’s “Lunar Chronicles” or Rick Riordan’s Magnus Chase and the Gods of Asgard. An excellent first purchase for all libraries.”
— School Library Journal (starred review)
“Outstanding...Each story is followed by a missive from its author, sharing inspiration and background on creative choices and changes. Thoughtfully compiled and written, this compendium is a must-read.”
— Publishers Weekly (starred review)
“A collection of Asian myths and legends in which beloved stories of spirits, magic, family, love, and heartbreak are combined with elements from modern teens’ lives….With such a variety of emotion and experiences to explore, nearly any teen can find something to relate to...An incredible anthology that will keep readers on the edges of their seats, wanting more.”
— Kirkus Reviews (starred review)
“Authors Oh and Chapman have created this much-needed anthology of Asian myths and folktales. ...It’s a wonderful concept, and the styles and subjects are as diverse as the countries and cultures represented. ...these stories are for everyone.”
“Oh and Chapman bring together fifteen authors with Asian roots to reinterpret stories from throughout Asia, creating a collection that...explores the traditional folktale motifs of fate, vengeance, goodness, and love. ...an inventiveness on par with Bardugo’s folktale revisions in The Language of Thorns.”
— Bulletin of the Center for Children’s Books
“All of these stories achieve emotional depth and connection while showcasing each storyteller’s unique literary voice.”
— The Horn Book
“Fifteen acclaimed Asian and Asian-American authors breathe fresh life into 15 popular Asian folktales and myths, elevating this anthology to a higher level...Oh and Chapman have created a work that celebrates Asian storytelling. It should fill...the reader with wonder.”