T5W: Books That Aren’t Set In/Inspired By The Western World

Find more about T5W here! This week’s topic is books that aren’t set in/inspired by the western world. I think this topic is great and I love reading books set in different places! I did 5 that I’ve read and recommend, and five on my TBR (I couldn’t narrow it down, I’m sorry!!)


  1. Memoirs of a Geisha by Arthur Golden, set in Japan pre-WW2
  2. A Tale for the Time Being by Ruth Ozeki. Half of this is set in Japan so I’m counting it!
  3. The Dragon Keeper series by Carol Wilkinson, set in Ancient China
  4. Sold by Patricia McCormick, set in Nepal
  5. Life of Pi by Yann Martel, set on the Pacific Ocean (and in India)


  1. Born a Crime by Trevor Noah, set in South Africa
  2. Homegoing by Yaa Gyasi, set in Ghana
  3. Shanghai Girls by Lisa See, set in Shanghai (duh)
  4. The Queen of Water by Laura Resau, set in Ecuador
  5. 1Q84 by Haruki Marukami, set in/inspired by Tokyo (and also has the most gorgeous cover)

Let me know if you’ve read any of these! Thanks for reading! xx

7 thoughts on “T5W: Books That Aren’t Set In/Inspired By The Western World

  1. Oh my goodness!!! I’m so happy to see A Tale for the Time Being on here! Have you read it yet? I absolutely LOVED the book I read it all in one day. I really enjoyed how the fates of two women from two distinct generations comes together all from a notebook tucked away in a Hello Kitty notebook.
    Oh and Murakami! He’s my favorite new author of 2017. My first book from him was Kafka on the Shore and I still have yet to read IQ84 (mainly out of intimidation. I mean, how long is that thing, like 1000 pages?!).
    Great meme btw! I look forward to reading more from you in the future Ally… Happy Reading! 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I finished it last week! I really enjoyed it!! I loved Nao as a character and narrator and loved hearing the two stories! And 1Q84 is super intimidating haha but I really want to read it soon!
      And thank you for reading and commenting 🙂 it means a lot!

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Have you read Shanghai Girls already? I just bought it on a sale and I have another book of the same author. I like the idea of reading books set in a “unusual” land. I think that I usually read books set on the States, UK … or fictitious places…

    Great list! I will keep an eye on your blog and I will try to read these books soon!

    Thank you for sharing!! I hope you like my blog! :3


      1. Yes, so have I. About Dream of Joy, I have only heard good things, and the few reviews I have read about this one, they all said it is really good!

        Thank you for sharing! I forgot to keep the eye on haha so I just did! Thank you for replying and for your time! 🙂

        Liked by 1 person

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