When I emailed Jewell Parker Rhodes requesting she contribute copies of her children’s book Ninth Ward
to the 2011 Wadadli Pen prize package, it was because the plot caught my attention and I figured Antiguan and Barbudan kids would enjoy and be able to relate to this tale of 12-year-old Lanesha, her grand Mama YaYa and the hurricane that would change their lives. We’re familiar, of course, with the Katrina situation and here in the Caribbean know intimately the destructive force of hurricane season all too well. Plus, of all places American, I feel particularly drawn to New Orleans which is on my must-visit list. Well, I’m happy to report that Jewell did not hesitate and mailed two copies of the book to Antigua; the getting here took a while but they arrived in the mail today. So thank you, for your generous response to an anonymous(ish) request, writer to writer, across the water. My only regret, that I didn’t request an extra copy for Cushion Club reading. After this, hopefully, they’ll be stocked locally (if they aren’t already).
For other book donations, thanks as well to Antiguan authors Floree Williams (Pink Teacups and Blue Dresses and Through the Closed Window) and Marcel Marshall (All that Glitters is not Gold); the Antigua and Barbuda International Literary Festival (for the contribution of books by Bernice McFadden, Sugar; Lorna Goodison, Turn Thanks and Selected Poems; and Elizabeth Nunez, Prospero’s Daughter and Anna In-Between); and 2011 partner, the Best of Books.
For the full list of 2011 prize donors, see here.