A few short weeks ago, well ok, in September, I saw a post recurring on a couple of blogs I follow: Diversity Spotlight Thursday, in which the blogger highlights books that the readers may not have noticed because they come from the more maginalised authors. Hosted by Bookshelves and Paperbacks, this caught my attention as this year I’ve been trying to reach out of my comfort zone as, like most of Western pop culture, my reading is rather whitewashed. Then, when I saw this post, I decided I had to participate, but alas Life got in the way as usual and I’m just now setting about writing it!
A Diverse Book I’ve Read and Enjoyed
Way back in September, Portobello Books were kind enough to send me an advance reader copy of The Story of a Brief Marriage by Anuk Arudpragasm (published by Protobello/Granta, available from Waterstones), a book about the latter days of the Sri Lankan civil war. This book was a gut-wrenching glimpse into a life so removed from my own that it took me a while to decide just how I felt about it. Just tell us how you felt Moz, well… I felt shocked and sad and angry, but above all I felt privileged.While not just a commentary on the atrocities of civil war, the book is also a sharp narration of the harsh reality of all those fleeing from a war not of their making. Although I say it A LOT, this was one of the books that left me reeling and lost in thought for quite a while.
A Diverse Book on my TBR
J read this book earlier in the year and thought it was pretty good, although he wouldn’t place it among his favourite reads. However, the magical realism in it does appeal to my hankering for fantasy. Also I thoroughly enjoy Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie, another Nigerian author so Goodreads reckons that I’ll like this one too. Unsurprisingly, this tale is set around four brothers who bunk off school to go fishing, however a chance encounter with a madman leaves them with a violent prophesy of their future. I’ve not read anything quite like this before but hopefully there’ll be a gap in my reading list at some point for me to sit down and read this.
A Diverse Book That’s Not Yet Released
This is a tough one as I’ve not kept as abreast of what’s coming out in the near future. An embarrassing admission from a blogger claiming to be devoted to books, but as dear Doris Day sings: Que Sera, Sera. That said, I am very interested in reading Alan Hollinghurst‘s forthcoming novel, yet to have a release date when last I heard at the launch of Writing Under the Influence in Gay’s the Word at the beginning of October. Unlike the others on this list of three, this book isn’t from a racial minority but dos come from an openly gay author. And is a clever way for me to humble brag about meeting a Man Booker winner, however briefly.
That’s it from me,
Diversity Spotlight Thursday is a weekly meme hosted by Aimal @ Bookshelves and Paperbacks. Every week, you come up with one book in each of three different categories:
– a diverse book you have read and enjoyed
– a diverse book on your TBR
– a diverse book that has not yet been released
You can check out Aimal’s announcement post for more information.
Don’t forget to leave a link to your own post in the comments and take some time to check out other people’s posts!