Catching Up: What I’ve Been Reading

Currently slogging my way through about two books on the tablet. Slow going because it’s hard for me to focus on a screen for too long. Also, it’s more difficult when the print is small with my poor eyesight. Nevertheless, I have gotten through some other good reads since the last time I’ve written. Hopefully, with Rebekah Weatherspoon’s Haven dropping, I’ll get some more soon.

midnight robber

Midnight Robber by Nalo Hopkinson

I borrowed a worn copy of Midnight Robber from the library along with a couple of other books by Hopkinson a couple of months ago and eventually got around to finishing Midnight Robber. What I thought was to be a fantasy about a young girl turned out to be much more. In fact, nothing in this book went the way I thought. And this isn’t a bad thing. Except I must say there may be some trigger warnings necessary for instances of sexual assault and abuse. These instances are never described graphically but are essential to the plot for the protagonist Tan Tan. However, what I found most fascinating about this work is how effortlessly Hopkinson blended fantasy with a real-world scenario. Hopkinson’s world-building skills are unmatched and her transition between Toussaint and New Half-Way Tree is one of the best narratives of legend and myth I’ve ever read. The development of Carnival places you right in the middle of the celebration in a way respectful of its traditions, not as an outsider looking in. But as I stated, the protagonist is a young girl, but this is not a story for children. If you have any sensitivity to sexual assault or abuse, then you want to approach this one with caution.

revolutionary_mothering

Revolutionary Mothering: Love on the Front Lines edited by Pauline Alexis Gumbs, China Martens and Mai’a Williams

I love reading nonfiction that not only opens my eyes but also inspires me. I got my hands on a copy of this before the end of last year and finally got around to reading it. Revolutionary Mothering is one of those books I did not want to put down. There are so many different perspectives on motherhood and the work (physical, mental, emotional, etc.) that goes into mothering as well as the resolve it takes to see it through when motherhood is so undervalued. These works center marginalized mothers, particularly WOC, QUILTBAG and disability mothers in various intersections. Even though I’m not a mother, I am an aunt and I often think of ways to support mothers, particularly Black mothers. In any case, this is one of the best in radical thought and shows us ways motherhood can be an impetus or launching pad for radical action and activism. This is one of my favorite books next to The Revolution Starts at Home when it comes to transformative action to bring about real change.

The_Sympathizer_-_book_cover

The Sympathizer by Viet Thanh Nguyen

I’d been intending to read Nguyen’s work ever since I had the pleasure of attending a reading at our local book festival last year. I finally had to borrow The Sympathizer from the library and see why he won the Pulitzer. Nguyen is one of those writers whose style it takes a moment to adapt to, but once you do, you get so deep into it that it feels familiar. It didn’t hurt that I actually tended to read it in his voice. I found myself reading the first half slowly but approaching the second half voraciously. His style fits the type of literature I like, narrative not told as a simple point by point movement from event to event. Admittedly, his writing requires a bit more attention, much like Toni Morrison, but it’s worth the effort. By the way, The Sympathizer is not a typical spy novel but those who enjoy the likes of John le Carre will like it as le Carre was an influence on Nguyen’s work (it shows even if you’re only familiar with adaptations of le Carre’s work.) While enjoyable, The Sympathizer is not a light read neither in its subject matter or style. The war in Vietnam follows the unnamed narrator and confronts the reader with the roots of repercussions still felt today. Having said this, I’d highly recommend.

CSP Presents The Black Swan Collective: Episode #53

 

We get back to our eclectic roots with a variety of genres throughout the episode. This week, we have tracks by Veronica King, Rina Mushonga and Melisa Whiskey. Our throwback section not only pays tribute to a couple of ladies who recently passed on but also to that underappreciated contribution to music: the girl group. Get your groove on with us this week. Also, apologies to Roadcase Royale for mixing up their name.

(Barely Audible) Music Under: “The Black Mother” by Georgia Anne Muldrow as Jyoti
You can find me on Twitter @IndasCorner, Tumblr at cornerstorepress.tumblr.com and my blog at cornerstorepress.wordpress.com. You can also check out the podcast I co-host with Didi (@dustdaughter) called Black Girl Squee (@blackgirlsquee) at blackgirlsquee.podomatic.com as well as the new Inda’s Corner audio essay series on Soundcloud. You can support me and the show at conceding2kismet@gmail.com or find me on Patreon at Inda Lauryn.

Late Spring Equinox

A little late for the spring equinox but so is spring. However, considering this is the first full weekend of spring, we may as well enjoy it. Here’s some feel good music to get the season started right: all about being mellow, exploring creativity and being our magical selves.

CSP Presents The Black Swan Collective: Episode #51

 

This week we have lots of artists new to the Collective We have selections from Speech Debelle, XHOSA and Kemi Ade among others. Our throwback segment has a double dose of trivia for you, so see if you can guess what it is. We’re lifting you higher in more than one way.

 

(Barely Audible) Music Under: “The Black Mother” by Georgia Anne Muldrow as Jyoti

You can find me on Twitter @IndasCorner, Tumblr at cornerstorepress.tumblr.com and my blog at cornerstorepress.wordpress.com. You can also check out the podcast I co-host with Didi (@dustdaughter) called Black Girl Squee (@blackgirlsquee) at blackgirlsquee.podomatic.com as well as the new Inda’s Corner audio essay series on Soundcloud. You can support me and the show at conceding2kismet@gmail.com or find me on Patreon at Inda Lauryn.

CSP Presents The Black Swan Collective: Episode #50

This week we celebrate our 50th episode!!! Cue the confetti I didn’t think I’d make it this long! We have selections from Melanie Charles, Southern Avenue and Ntjam Rosie among others. Our throwback segment will give you life and our little something extra will get you moving. Thank you for celebrating with us!
(Barely Audible) Music Under: “The Black Mother” by Georgia Anne Muldrow as Jyoti
You can find me on Twitter @IndasCorner, Tumblr at cornerstorepress.tumblr.com and my blog at cornerstorepress.wordpress.com. You can also check out the podcast I co-host with Didi (@dustdaughter) called Black Girl Squee (@blackgirlsquee) at blackgirlsquee.podomatic.com. You can support me and the show at conceding2kismet@gmail.com or find me on Patreon at Inda Lauryn.