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Pet Sins July 2010

Stories with interracial couples of color

Here is a short list of books, both fiction and non-fiction, that feature interracial couples of color:

Hotel on the Corner of Bitter and Sweet

Set in Seattle during WWII, "Hotel on the Corner of Bitter and Sweet" is a tale of forbidden romance between a Chinese American boy Henry and his classmate Keiko. The father of young Henry Lee, who lost his own family in the Sino-Japanese war, strongly opposes his son's deepening friendship with a Japanese American girl.

Young Henry defies his parents' anger, school bullies, and even the executive order to intern Japanese Americans, to maintain his commitment to Keiko. But will the courage and love of a chlid be enough to overcome the bigotry of equally determined and more cunning adults?

For more about the book, see Jamie Ford interview.

Love Against the Law: the autobiographies of Tex and Nelly Camfoo

Tex Camfoo, son of a Chinese father and Aborigine mother, was at various points in his life classified as "Aboriginal", "half-caste", and "European", the latter two categories not allowed to legally marry Aborigines. Going against the law, Ted married Nelly, an Aborigine. The stories of their lives reveal the complexities of race relations in the Northern Territory of Australia.

Read more about "Love Against the Law" at ABC Online Indigenous.

Linden Girl: A Story of Outlawed Lives

The true story of a forbidden marriage between an Afghan immigrant and an aboriginal Australian woman, Linden Girl is set in 1926, when the Aborigines Act of 1905 was still in effect. Under the Act, aborigines needed government permission to marry. Having received the blessing of aboriginal elders for their marriage, aborigine woman Lallie Matbar and Afghan cameleer Jack Akbar petitioned the Western Australian goverment for permission to marry, only to be subjected to government attempts to separate them....

Read more about Linden Girl at National Library of Australia

BlAsian Exchanges

Filipino American writer Sam Cacas' first novel explores relationships between Asian men and black women. For more information see:

AsianWeek's interview with Sam Cacas Sam Cacas' BlAsian Exchanges Blog

Cousins of Color

Based on the life of David Fagen, Cousins of Color is a work of historical fiction set during the Philippine-American War. Fagen, an African American private serving in the Philippines, is torn between loyalty to his country and his conscience's distaste for the American occupation and oppression of another nation. Persuaded by his sympathy for the locals and his love for a Filipina freedom fighter, Fagen defects to the Filipino guerillas and becomes a guerilla leader...

Official Site

Cornbread and Dim Sum

In this gripping memoir, Jacqueline Annette Sue, an African American woman, recounts her romance with her Chinese American coworker Frank Sue in 1960s San Francisco. Cultural differences and racial tensions threatened their relationship, but Jacqueline and Frank built a marriage that endured for 4 decades until Frank's death in 2004. For more information, see

Review by Bill McDonald, President of The American Authors' Association

Cornbread and Dim Sum review on 'Sardonic Sistah Says'

Cornbread and Dim Sum had been selected by Independent Publishers as one of America's ten most interesting books of 2004.

The Years of Rice and Salt

Kim Stanley Robinson's sweeping alternate history spanning 4 continents consists of 10 stories, all of which feature multiple interracial friendships, professional partnerships and marriages between non-Europeans. The stories do not make a special issue out of interracial relationships, treating them as an intergral part of everyday life. East African/Northeast Asian, Vietnamese/Chinese/Miwok (native Californian), Japanese/Iroquois, Samarqandi/Tibetan, Armenian/Indian, Japanese/Chinese, Chinese/Tibetan, Persian/Chinese, Arab/Algonquian are just some of the many combinations of intercultural friendships and marriages formed between characters.

Book 6 features a marriage between a Chinese woman and a Persian man. Kang Tongbi and Ibrahim meet after strange circumstances in Widow Kang's life; each senses that their connection goes back beyond their present lifetimes...

Wild Wishes

Wild Wishes is a collection of 3 IR romances involving black heroines. In "Happy Effin Valentine", the heroine Effin has a record of poor luck with romance. After a date gone awry, a depressed Effin comes across a friendly cat. The cat turns out to be Masa, a Japanese man who has been placed under a curse. Will Effin be the key to lifting Masa's curse? And can Masa end Effin's streak of bad luck in love?

In "Into Temptation", Billie Fowler has an unconfessed attraction to her hot Latino coworker Tomes Mendez. On his part, Tomes has a secret crush on Billie. When the two attend an "Anti-Valentine's Day" party, their "just friends" relationship takes an unintended turn...

J-Pop Love Song
A BWAM intergenerational romance by Shiree McCarver: Charlene, a 41 year old black American novelist, meets younger J-pop star Kane during a movie project. Kane begins to pursue the older woman, but will their age difference, the machinations of Kane's manager and Charlene's memory of her late Japanese husband derail their relationship?
Let's Get It On (Love Spectrum Romance)

Dyanne Davis spins an engaging tale about an international romance between Heaven, a black American career woman, and Hamid, a Pakistani doctor. After overcoming the stereotypes they held about each other, the two marry, but Hamid has family obligations in Pakistan and only sees his wife a few times a year. Heaven, firmly committed to her career in the U.S., does not wish to relocate to Pakistan. Will this long distance relationship fall apart, or can the couple find a way to meet each other's needs and still be true to themselves?

No Ordinary Love
In Angela Weaver's action-meets-romance, Alex, a former soldier-turned-schoolteacher, meets Xian, the father of one of her students. The African American teacher and Chinese businessman bond over one thing they share - a history of losing those they love. When Xian's son is kidnapped, father and teacher join forces to recover the boy...
Come With Me

Jessica Bishop, a driven, successful African American professional, decides to take a much-needed break from the white-dominated corporate world. Looking forward to some solitude at her brother's mountain cabin in North Carolina, Jessica's plans are derailed when Michael Cloud Walker, a Native American, barges into her life. Although Jessica has no intention of reciprocating his interest in her, Cloud is not a man who gives up easily.

A Drummer's Beat to Mend
The hero of Kei Swanson's interracial romance is Tetsuro, a taiko performer from Japan. Tetsuro accidentally injures his hand while on tour in the U.S. This potentially career-stopping event brings him into the care of Dr Stafford, a talented African American surgeon. Tetsuro and his lady doctor develop an unlikely attraction, but will Dr Stafford's stagnant relationship with another doctor get in the way of new romance?
Ebony Eyes
Another Japanese man/Black woman romance by Kei Swanson (who is white). Undercover detective Laine Tanizaki rescues Corie Rickman, a bookstore owner, from a thug. Neither Corie nor Laine is who the other thinks s/he is. To Corie, daughter of a prominent African American family, Laine is merely a fastfood restaurant worker. On his part, Laine starts to care for Corie while being unaware of her past connection to the crime ring that he is trying to bust.
In Blood and Worth Loving

Native American vampire Adrian meets a plus-size African American lady through a family introducton. Dark-skinned and full-figured, Brandi is not Adrian's type but quite unexpectedly, he finds himself drawn to her.

The Alpha Promise

While in London, black American expatriate Adina Carr goes to the aid of an Asian boy in trouble. Young Jin turns out to be a vampire prince on the run from a rebel vampire faction. By helping Jin, Adina is unwittingly swept into the vampires' civil war, and finds herself falling in love in spite of the danger surrounding her and Jin.

Color Blind: Loving Jiro and Lakota Anthology

Jordyn Tracey's anthology of two romances pairs black heroines with an Asian male and a Native American male. In "Loving Jiro", community college teacher Kiara is courted by Jiro, a Japanese man. Despite her attraction to him, Kiara has doubts about the relationship. Aside from cultural clashes over the dynamics between men and women, Jiro's violent background may prove a sticking point for Kiara, who wishes to avoid repeating her experiences from a previous abusive relationship. Can she trust Jiro's promises?

In "Lakota", Tawni's relationship with her Native American boyfriend is one of constant conflict. Tired of the fighting, Tawni seeks refuge in dreams, dreams in which her boyfriend treats her the way she wishes he would. When this dream version of her lover starts calling her his wife and asking her to forgive him for calling her back from the dead, it appears that the dreams are not Tawni's own escapist fantasies but may have a life of their own.

Adrienne

In this fantasy romance by D. Renee Bagby, black college student Adrienne is unexpectedly spirited away from her campus by Malik, a king from another dimension. Malik is the ruler of Ulan, an Asian-inspired kingdom on the planet Bron. He believes Adrienne is his destined queen, but Adrienne does not want to be part of the strange world of Bron, where magic is the norm and the customs are alien to her. However, the longer Adrienne stays in Bron, the more her attitude towards the new land (and her unwanted betrothed) change...

Caramel Flava: The Eroticanoir.com Anthology

An anthology of erotica about African American woman/Latino man couples. This collection includes stories by Zane and other writers.

Sensuality: Caramel Flava II

An anthology of erotic stories that feature African American man/Latina woman couples. This collection includes stories by Zane and other writers.

Honey Flava

An American anthology of erotica with Asian man/black woman couples. This is a collection of stories by Zane and other writers.

Nairobi To Shenzhen: a Novel of Love in the East

In this semi-autobiographical novel by Mark Obama Ndesandjo, the protagonist David, who spent his childhood in Nairobi and his young adult life in the U.S., moves to China after 9/11. There, he forms a bond with a young orphan and finds love with a Chinese woman.

David's story parallels events in Ndesandjo's own life. Ndesandjo, an Ivy League-educated professional of Kenyan and Jewish American descent, traveled to China for some soul-searching after losing his marketing job post-9/11. He is now an established businessman in Guangdong Province, where he volunteers on behalf of Chinese orphans and lives with his wife, a native of Henan Province. Read more about Ndesandjo at Obama's half-brother speaks of their abusive father (AFP, Nov 2 2009) and Obama's Half-Brother Recasts Story Of Their Father (All Things Considered, NPR, Nov 13 2009).

The above list is a limited selection and by no means represents the diversity of IR between non-whites. Readers, feel free to send us more book recommendations.

Disclaimer: This site does not endorse any of the books and authors listed above, nor do we make warranties as to the quality and accuracy of the any of the aforementioned works of literature.