Star Daughter (a review) // ft. 18 books with amazing Desi representation that you need to read ASAP

Star Daughter Review _ Desi Book Recommendations

hola amigos!

I hope you’ve been well! Today I’m really excited to share my review of the wonderful Star Daughter by Shveta Thakrar, a contemporary fantasy about a half-star who has to quest to the heavens in order to save her father. As well as this, I will be recommending 18 desi books to diversify your TBR! I buddy read this book with the brilliant Mis Hashmi


**I received an e-copy of this book in exchange for my honest opinion.**

This post is part of a blog tour being hosted by Hear Our Voices Book Tours – an incredible tour company that is working to get books to #ownvoices readers! You can check out the other stops on this tour here.

Star DaughterStar Daughter

by Shveta Thakrar// The daughter of a star and a mortal, Sheetal is used to keeping secrets. Pretending to be “normal.” But when an accidental flare of her starfire puts her human father in the hospital, Sheetal needs a full star’s help to heal him. A star like her mother, who returned to the sky long ago.

Sheetal’s quest to save her father will take her to a celestial court of shining wonders and dark shadows, where she must take the stage as her family’s champion in a competition to decide the next ruling house of the heavens–and win, or risk never returning to Earth at all.

This gorgeously imagined YA debut blends shades of Neil Gaiman’s Stardust and a breathtaking landscape of Hindu mythology into a radiant contemporary fantasy.

Published: 11th August 2020 (USA) and 3rd September 2020 (UK)

Rating: ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️(4 stars)


Divider1.pngmy thoughts

As soon as I saw the cover of this book, I knew I had to read it! I mean… just look at that gorgeous Indian girl on the cover with her flowing silver hair (which looks so incredible that I might just copy it)!! 

Things I really loved about this book:

  • Shveta Thakrar’s writing is so beautiful and eloquent that I couldn’t help but get sucked into the story. I wanted to speed through and find out what happens but at the same time, I didn’t want to miss a single word!
  • The incorporation of Hinduism and Hindu mythology – I think this is the first book I’ve read that actually talked about Hinduism and I loved how Sheetal actually did Hindu things like chanting a mantra before her quest. All the references to asparas, yakshas and other magical creatures were also really fun to read!
  • All the Indian references!! The mentions of food had my mouth watering, all the beautiful descriptions of Indian clothes made me nostalgic and all the gossiping aunties were so relatable! 
  • Sheetal and her ‘starry brown girl magic’. While Sheetal did make a few frustrating decisions, she was mostly a relatable and realistic teen. I loved how much she cared for her dad and I really enjoyed reading her story.
  • Sheetal and Minal’s friendship! Minal is such a supportive, kind friend, and I couldn’t help but love her. She cared a lot about Sheetal and was a brilliant wing woman! Their friendship did feel a bit one-sided at points, but overall, I really enjoyed reading about these two.
  • Dev was also really sweet and really fleshed out. He had multiple layers to him and his struggle between family and doing the right thing was really interesting to read. He is so adorable and I really appreciated how caring and down-to-Earth he was. His and Sheetal’s relationship was also really cute and I loved their scenes together.
  • The settings in this book were breathtaking! I felt wholly immersed in each of the places described and I could vividly imagine them. Both the night market and the celestial court sounded incredible and I love to be able to visit them!
  • The incorporation of magic into daily life was also really fascinating to read. I really enjoyed finding out how the stars and magical beings lived alongside the humans that were oblivious to them. 

What I didn’t really like about this book was the fact that the plot was a bit predictable (though there were some twists) and the pacing was somewhat disjointed at points. I also didn’t feel completely invested in any of the characters. However, this was a fun read and I had an enjoyable experience.

Overall, I really enjoyed the representation in the book, as well as the worldbuilding and writing style, and I would recommend this to anyone looking for a beautifully crafted world to immerse themselves in!

Divider1.pngdesi books recs

and now for the bit you’ve all been waiting for!! these are 18 books by Desi authors that I have loved or that are high on my TBR! I hope some of these books look interesting to you and you decide to give them a go!

**clicking on a cover will take you to the book’s GoodReads page

feel-good, read-in-one-go contemporary romances:

My So-Called Bollywood Life A Match Made in Mehendi When Dimple Met Rishi (Dimple and Rishi, #1) There's Something About Sweetie (Dimple and Rishi, #2)

My So-Called Bollywood Life by Nisha Sharmareview

A Match Made in Mehendi by Nandini Bajpai⁣review

When Dimple Met Rishi by Sandhya Menonreview

There’s Something About Sweetie by Sandhya Menonreview

  10 Things I Hate About Pinky (Dimple and Rishi, #3) From Twinkle, with Love Of Curses and Kisses (St. Rosetta's Academy, #1) The Trouble with Hating You

10 Things I Hate About Pinky by Sandhya Menon 

From Twinkle, with Love by Sandhya Menon 

Of Curses and Kisses by Sandhya Menon

The Trouble With Hating You by Sajni Patel

YA contemporaries that explore hard-hitting topics:

Run, Rebel The Love & Lies of Rukhsana Ali Don't Read the Comments Saints and Misfits Internment That Asian Kid 

Run, Rebel by Manjeet Mann

The Love and Lies of Rukhsana Ali by Sabina Khan⁣⁣

Don’t Read the Comments by Eric Smith

Saints and Misfits by S.K. Ali

Internment by Samira Ahmed⁣⁣

That Asian Kid by Savita Kalhan

YA fantasies:

 An Ember in the Ashes (An Ember in the Ashes, #1) The Tiger at Midnight (The Tiger at Midnight Trilogy, #1) Empire of Sand (The Books of Ambha, #1) Hunted by the Sky (Hunted by the Sky, #1)

An Ember in the Ashes by Sabaa Tahir⁣⁣ 

The Tiger at Midnight by Swati Teerdala⁣⁣

Empire of Sand by Tasha Suri

Hunted by the Sky by Tanaz Bhathena

Chat With Me

Are you planning on reading Star Daughter? What are your favourite Desi books? What books are you looking forward to? How’s life going? Divulge your secrets…


Kerys xx

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25 thoughts on “Star Daughter (a review) // ft. 18 books with amazing Desi representation that you need to read ASAP

  1. SO MANY good books in this list! I’ve read some of them and most of the others are on my TBR haha. A Desi read that I read recently was Seeing Like a Feminist by Nivedita Menon which is actually non-fiction and I thoroughly enjoyed it. It was so informative about Indian history, culture, and laws. The author did her research and I love that I could soak up all the info in one place.


    Svetha’s writing is soo gorgeous 😭 it honestly was one of the main reasons I loved it! And I was SO HAPPY to read the Hindu mythology!! My favorite character is Minal but I like Sheetal too 🙂
    THANK YOU SO MUCH FOR THE RECS!! i soo need to read more desi books 😭


  3. Yassss Kerys IS BACK. First of all, SO EXCITED to read this one. That cover is just WOW stunning. But also the concept is so amazing and I’ve been highly anticipating this one. Your review has made me super hyped and I’m so happy you loved the cultural representation in this book. Also yay for realistic teen rep. And ah LOVE all the recs too!!

    I see Ember over there. Also, you’re probs thinking ‘Ruby why are you here? You should be finishing the book!!’. And you’d be correct and I shall leave in shame.

    Jk still here. I really want to give Sandhya Menon a try. I’ve had her first two books for ages now and just haven’t gotten around to them yet. I tried reading Twinkle but wasn’t loving the writing style, unfortunately. However, I need some fluff in my life rn and might try the audiobooks. Of Curses sounds AMAZING. And Run Rebel has me really intrigued, I really want to read more books in verse.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Hey Rubes!! (my brain has chosen you for a nickname) aww you make me feel so happy 🥰 Star daughter is so gorgeous!! It was really fun to read and I hope you enjoy it!

      haha 😂 I’ll excuse you being here because you’re so lovely and how could i not 🥺 … but read Ruby read!!

      I haven’t read Twinkle yet so I don’t know whether the writing styles are similar but Dimple and Sweetie are really good! I personally preferred the second one but both are adorable fluffy reads to fill you with serotonin! Run Rebel was honestly so incredible and powerful and I 10/10 recommend!! It was also a pretty quick read since it was in verse so that’s another bonus! Thank you so much for reading and I hope you’re doing awesome! love ya 💛

      Liked by 1 person

      1. First of all, that nickname is FINE. It’s my what my IRL friends call me so 😉 also you spelt it right lmao, I keep getting ‘Rubs’ and just NO 😂

        Eeeppp so glad I’ve left with some recs and agh SO EXCITED 😍

        Liked by 1 person

  4. Wait… so stars are personified…. and they’re magic…. and they can have kids with mortals… but then after that they leave the mortal world…and kinda ignore their kids…but then when there’s trouble the kids get shoved into adventurous pain?


    Liked by 1 person

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