“But, as I said, for all that is familiar, this book is not a knock-off. The complex characterization of Donte, who also serves as the narrative voice, the point of view through which we experience the story, is especially complicatedly human. “I don’t want Trey to feel bad but I do want him to feel bad”. Then there is the visual, general descriptiveness, of the storytelling. “My head is pushed down and my body follows, collapsing in to the patrol car”. The loss of innocence. “I never thought there’d be a time where mom and dad couldn’t protect me. Is this growing up?” Another reference point, the Kerry Washington film American Son, in which, much as with Donte, the temperature in the room changes when officers are interacting with the Black mother as opposed to the white father, similarly over the fate of a son – and similarly the mother is all righteous indignation ready to take on the system while the father is just daddy (the book tackles those various levels of privilege). The relationships generally, the established ones (his parents, but especially his brother who accompanies him on his fencing journey) and the emerging ones (Zahra, a teammate and love interest, and his coach, Mr. Jones) are engaging and multi-faceted.” – read the full review in the Blogger on Books series which runs on my Jhohadli blog.
African-American writer Jewell Parker-Rhodes is a past Wadadli Pen donor, a fact that had no bearing on the review.
-Joanne C. Hillhouse, blogger and author, and Wadadli Pen founder and coordinator
Filed under Uncategorized
A reminder that the process with these Carib Lit Plus Caribbean arts bulletins is to do a front and back half of the month, updating as time allows as new information comes in; so, come back.
Carnival Hangover, a short story by Joanne C. Hillhouse, was excerpted as part of advocacy group Intersect (intersect.anu) ‘Carnival Bodies’ instagram series. This and other excerpted stories will be published on the Intersect website when it goes live in September/October 2020.
Caribbean authors Curdella Forbes, Lauren Francis-Sharma, Marlon James, Claudia Rankine, and likely others I’m missing (with apologies for any omissions) are included in the line-up of the September 28th to October 5th 2020 Brooklyn Book Festival. It will be as virtual as everything this year of pandemics and protests 2020. Catch all the action here.
Darlene Beazer-Parker’s Summertime Fun, published in 2020, has been added to our lists of Antiguan and Barbudan Writings and Antigua and Barbuda Children’s Literature. Partial summary: “Darlene Beazer-Parker celebrates the island home where she grew up in this children’s book filled with beautiful photographs. The story starts with a bright blazing sun and children running down to swim in the Codrington lagoon to cool off. There, they are free to play all day. Some children learn how to swim while others watch quietly in the shade. Jumping from a wharf or the side of a boat, the children become fast friends. Swimming styles may differ, but they all celebrate being together in such a beautiful place. At the end of the day, the children plant mangrove seedlings to preserve their lagoon for future children. They go home wishing summer will never end. Join the author as she looks back on an idyllic summer in Barbuda where anything seems possible.”
Earlier this summer, Caribbean Reads Publishing announced the publication of The Fight for Belle Vue and The Field of Power by St. Lucian Travis Weekes. Per a Caribbean Reads release, “Family feuds, forbidden romance, political corruption, colonialism, racism, and magic are some of the themes packed into these plays. The plays are set in St. Lucia and reflect the cultural landscape of the Caribbean.” Funding for the project was provided by the UWI St. Augustine Campus Research and Publication Fund Committee. Copies available in Trinidad as of August 2020 and the book is available in kindle and paperback at various outlets across the Caribbean and beyond.
Over at my personal author blog, the two regularly updated series are Blogger on Books and CREATIVE SPACE. Be sure to check them out. I’m still talking about To Shoot Hard Labour but turning fresh soil.
As with all content on Wadadli Pen, except otherwise noted, this is written by Joanne C. Hillhouse (author of The Boy from Willow Bend, Dancing Nude in the Moonlight, Musical Youth, With Grace, Lost! A Caribbean Sea Adventure/Perdida! Una Aventura en el Mar Caribe, and Oh Gad!). All Rights Reserved. If you enjoyed it, check out my page on WordPress, and/or Facebook, and help spread the word about Wadadli Pen and my books. You can also subscribe to the site to keep up with future updates. Thanks.