I hope that your sensei has told you a part of this.
This is in abbreviated form. Read it and use the names as cues to further reading.
The roots of martial arts
Bodhidharma (Daruma) in Japanese traveled from India to a monastery in what we call the shaolin district of China and was met with monks who were in no physical condition to sit and meditate for the eight hours they were supposed to be meditating each day. Bodhidharma studied different animals, and created a training regimen based on their movements, to improve the condition of the monks.
This is the root of Tai chi, chi gong, yoga, and Kung fu.
Higaonna Kanryu sensei went to (I believe) fushau district, where Ryu Ryu kyu taught him Kung fu, more specifically the white crane (and maybe a little tiger) style.
The katas from saifa and onwards as well as sanchin (with turn, which is for sandan) and tensho can all be directly attributed hereto.
The Japanese spinoff
I'll come back to this...
Chojun Miyagi sensei (the guy who was the inspiration of the original karate kid movies) refined sanchin and eliminated the turn, and also created geki Sai Dai ichi & geki Sai Dai ni (CA 1942), in order to have easier katas for beginners, and enabling teaching of bigger classes.
There is a book of the story of Chojun Miyagi sensei (written by him, if I am not mistaken) but I have not been able to find it myself, at a reasonable price... It has not been reprinted.
my recommendation to a fellow student
Talk to your sensei it is great that you want to read more and immerse yourself, but the tradition is that this is mainly retained and passed on mouth to mouth.
I normally tell. My students part of these things at the beginning or end of a lesson. It is part of the required knowledge for the theoretical part of the black belt exam, after all…