Originally published in The Washington Post “You are yourself a haunting thing.” These words come as no great shock to Nigerian-Tamil author Akwaeke Emezi. After all, they believe they were born an ogbanje, or Igbo spirit. “Ogbanje come and go,” Emezi writes in “Dear Senthuran: A Black Spirit memoir.” “They are never really here — if you are a thing that was born to die, … Continue reading A review of ‘Dear Senthuran: A Black Spirit memoir’ by Akwaeke Emezi
Originally published in Compulsive Reader Being a middle-aged single Indian mother is hard enough without throwing the secret of your husband’s death, and your love for a gay friend into the mix. This is the melee Trinidad-born, London-bred novelist Ingrid Persaud brings us into with her emotionally-driven world of characters in her debut novel, Love After Love. Just as captivating as her first short story “The … Continue reading A review of Love After Love by Ingrid Persaud
The one hundred and thirteenth Nobel Prize in Literature was awarded today. Unlike in previous years, I was particularly nervous about this year’s prize. The last time WE won a Nobel Prize in Literature was almost twenty years ago and WE have only won this prestigious prize twice in its history – Derek Walcott in 1992 and V.S. Naipaul in 2001. Suffice to say, when … Continue reading Waiting for Jamaica Kincaid’s Nobel Prize
Originally published in Compulsive Reader At a time where immigrant trauma and loss permeates the media, Edwidge Danticat’s book of short stories Everything Inside arrives right on time. The themes of loss and grief run through each of these stories. Danticat is a master of identifying and writing about trauma, especially as it relates to immigrants. Loss and grief are rooted in a large part of the … Continue reading A review of Everything Inside by Edwidge Danticat
Originally published in Literary Hub. Listen blog post It’s been a year since British-Jamaican author Andrea Levy died, leaving the world short one more literary icon. Learning of her death that day I was thrown into mourning for a woman I’d never met but who truly knew me as a Caribbean immigrant living abroad. Much of Levy’s work reflects the experience of black Jamaican Britons, … Continue reading Guiding Me Back to My Caribbean Roots: Remembering Novelist Andrea Levy
Lewis Carroll would have been 188 years old today. The English fiction writer, whose real name was Charles L. Dodgson, left the world with a body of work to last us many lifetimes. His most famous work derived from his most famous subject – Alice. The literary versatility of Carroll’s work is yet to be matched and has prompted many discussions and analyses over the … Continue reading “And what is the use of a book,’ thought Alice, ‘without pictures or conversation?” from the mind of Lewis Carroll – Happy Birthday!
Brooklyn Caribbean Literary Festival (BCLF) kicks off this weekend with a packed schedule of established and emerging writers for the inaugural event. The festival will host a number of writers, narrators and other performance artists from the diaspora representing countries including Trinidad and Tobago, Haiti, Jamaica, Barbados and more. “This new festival promises to celebrate through the voice of the poet and the pen of … Continue reading Brooklyn to Host its First Caribbean Literary Festival
Cancel culture, also known as call-out culture, is the term used to call attention to alleged offensive infractions made by a person – usually cultural behemoths – and largely aims to remove them from their positions of fame and stature. Musicians can get canceled. Movie stars can get canceled. TV stars, politicians, activists – almost anyone in the spotlight can get canceled if they say … Continue reading Cancel Culture in Publishing: An Explainer