So this is going to be long… TLDR: 30 something native New Yorker leaning into her Indian roots by watching and reading all that comes out with/by South Asian creators and helping expose that content. Glad to have you here – happy reading!
As a kid, I dreamt of growing up like the girls on TV but truth was it was impossible – they were blonde blue-eyed white girls with slender bodies whereas I was a brown-eyed hairy brunette who thought she was chubby (s/o to my immigrant mom for buying me baggy clothes b/c I would 1. grow into them and 2. that would save money).
What I would have done to have seen girls that look like me on TV – whose parents were also strict, I would’ve known that it was okay. What I would have done to felt seen, heard, and understood if I knew others were going through the same thing but I grew up as an outsider – growing up in the Bronx surrounded by black and brown faces but none like my own who made fun of me for smelling like tharka (roasted Indian spices). So for a long time, I distanced myself from anything and everything Indian – carving an identity that was based on me being from the Bronx rather than a first-gen kid navigating the waters between being the first born to immigrant parents and having two distinct identities – the American born at school and the Indian daughter at home. Luckily in high school, I met other South Asian first-gen kids who were navigating the same waters and that’s where I began to appreciate and lean into my culture. For the last two decades, I haven’t looked back.
You’re scratching your head, right? What’s that got to do with this blog? I started this blog a few years ago because I love reading and am the go-to for recommending books to my inner circle so I decided to start blogging but then it got overwhelming and felt like a heavy task of monitoring what I said and how I said it, causing me to go back into my shell – reverting to sharing my thoughts and opinions via text, phone, or the gram.
However over the past year — I’ve felt galvanized by the movements carried out to tell the narratives of BIPOC that haven’t been told or rather weren’t really heard before. As someone who has felt ostracized, I’ve grown passionate about my roots over the last two decades despite growing up despising being different. Now I lean into those differences – I’m a badass first-gen Indian American woman – born to Punjabi immigrants. You can catch me telling you about the latest Punjabi songs. When I’m not blasting bhangra, I’m reading and digesting anything that fellow Indians/Indian-Americans are doing/writing/acting in. Perhaps I’m overcompensating for not being a part of the community when I was younger – who knows but heck, it’s a part of my identity now and if you know me – you know damn well I’m Punjabi, loud, and proud.
And well… I’m here to share those books, movies, and all the content I can get my hands on with anyone who’ll listen. I’m passionate about Indian culture and feel a new sense of urgency to write about books and shows I’ve read and watched so that you too can be a part of my community. I hope you enjoy it because I certainly love watching and reading anything and everything on the South Asian diaspora – the good, bad, and even the ugly. So welcome to my blog!
- What to expect?
- What makes this different?
- What makes you qualified to write about the brown narrative?
- Theres a book or show I heard was good but don’t want to commit. Are you going to write about it?
- I have feedback. Where can I share?
- Do you do sponsored content?
1. What to expect?
Hopefully reviews that make you laugh and inspire you to check out something new. I did the heavy lifting so you can enjoy your downtime.
P.S. I also read/watch stories with non-South Asians. You can catch those reviews under my “Non-Desi” tags. I’m into psych so loads of books on human behavior there – both fiction (love me some coming of age novels) and nonfiction (mostly around dating and how to be a better version of oneself).
2. What makes this different?
All brown stories are worth telling even the ones that aren’t relatable to me. I had a friend tell me that she hated the Netflix show, “Never have I ever” b/c it portrayed a stereotypical Indian cast – super educated Indian mom who has an accent with a cousin who came to work here in tech from India again with an accent but those are real stories. Might not be mine but it’s someone’s and it’s worth sharing.
3. What makes you qualified to write about the brown narrative?
I live and breathe my identity. I speak on behalf of myself and the opinions here are not reflective of the larger diaspora – they are all based on my lived experience.
4. There’s a book or show I heard was good but don’t want to commit. Are you going to write about it?
Probs but hit me up here so that I make sure to add it on my list!
5. I have feedback. Where can I share?
I’d love constructive feedback especially if it helps my writing or helps further develop my voice. Send it my way here 🙂
6. Do you do sponsored content?
If I make it – heck yeah! Lol, but for now if I do, it’ll be listed in the review so that you know where I stand with the review. However, please note that I am linking books on the site back to Amazon. By doing so, I’m participating in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for me to earn fees by linking to Amazon.com and affiliated sites. This shouldn’t take away from my reviews as I mean what I’m writing and reviewing. If you have any questions/concerns, feel free to reach out to me here. Thanks!