The 20 best Caribbean book blogs

Since moving to Barbados in December last year, I’ve been keen to discover more about Caribbean literature, and a great way to do that is by reading book blogs. It took me some time to search out the best ones, so I thought I’d share with you this list of blogs by readers and writers from the Caribbean. Happy reading!

1.  Geoffrey Philp – Jamaican author based in Florida, blogs daily on Caribbean literature

2.  Novel Niche – book reviews by a 26-year-old bibliophile in Trinidad

3.  Caribbean Book Blog – the name speaks for itself, doesn’t it? Based in St Lucia

4.  Caribbean Literary Salon – this one’s not a personal blog, more of a gathering-place for other blogs, articles and comments about Caribbean books

5.  Pleasure – Trinidadian poet/journalist Andre Bagoo blogs about all things poetic

6.  Repeating Islands – several posts a day on all aspects of Caribbean culture

7.  Wadadli Pen – blog associated with a prize for young writers in Antigua and Barbuda

8.  Jamaican Literature – news and info on the latest Jamaican books and literary events

9.  Poets of the Caribbean – profiles of poets from across the region

10.  Memo from La-La Land – interesting mix of book reviews, profiles and miscellanea

11.  A Grain of Pure Salt – blog of Barbadian speculative fiction writer Karen Lord

12.  Nicholas Laughlin – interesting but infrequent snippets from this Trinidadian writer

13.  Signifyin’ Guyana – Guyanese literary critic talks books, politics, culture and sex

14.  Conscious Pen – mix of creative writing and profiles of Caribbean/African figures

15.  YardEdge – Jamaican books, art and culture

16.  Nicolette Bethel – the Bahamian writer and academic blogs on… well, everything

17.  Caribbean Children’s Literature – Diane Browne on children’s books in the region

And finally, three more blogs that appear to be inactive, but had some wonderful content in the past and would love to see resurrected…

18. Antilles – this blog by the Caribbean Review of Books had some wonderful interviews, features and profiles of West Indian writers

19. Mahanaim Notes – beautiful poetry by St Lucian poet John Robert Lee

20. Island Fiction Series Editor – blog by Macmillan editor, talking about the Island Fiction series but also wider literary topics

Hope this was useful! Let me know if there are any other sites I should add to the list. By the way, the Caribbean is of course a multilingual region, but for this list I’ve focused on blogs written in English. Feel free to suggest sites dealing with the French, Spanish or Dutch Caribbean as well, though. Would love to expand the list with your help.

Updates

  • Some great additions suggested by Alex Gil on Twitter: Manioc (in French), CubaNowParole en Archipel (in French), La Ventana (in Spanish), EthnoCubaMontray Kreyol (in French). Alex also maintains his own list of Caribbean sites, not all of which I’ve included here because he goes beyond book blogs – see his full list here.
  • Also Shivanee of Novel Niche has some great bookmarks on her site – not all book blogs, and not all Caribbean, but a good number of them are, and the list is definitely worth a look.
  • The Spaces Between Words is not strictly a blog, but a great series of podcasts featuring interviews with Caribbean writers or those with a Caribbean connection. Check it out here.
  • Jamaican children’s author Helen Williams keeps up a blog at Beyond the Marog Kingdom, featuring book news and thoughts particularly on  teaching and writing for children.
  • Check out Seawoman’s Caribbean Writing Opportunities, a wonderful site full of details on writing contests, magazines and other opportunities for writers in the region, along with other posts about culture and creativity in general
  • Summer Edward, founder of Caribbean children’s literature ezine Anansesem, blogs about children’s literature here
  • Check out the blog of Dominican writer Giftus John, updated once a month or so
  • Giftus John emailed me to suggest adding Savvy Bestsellers, which is written by a Dominican living in St Kitts

44 thoughts on “The 20 best Caribbean book blogs

  1. Thank you for this list Andrew! I am always trying to find material from Caribbean writers so I can reference from/refer to at ISLAND VIGNETTES. There is more to the Caribbean than sun, sea & sand. The region is a unique space made up of such a vibrant populace. Its always interesting to learn about the raw, real & riveting stories/perspectives lurking behind the deceptively sleepy island charm.

    1. Hi Island Scribbler, many thanks for visiting! I’m glad you found the list useful. There’s definitely a lot more to the Caribbean than sun, sea & sand. So many stories, so much history and culture, so many different languages and traditions all packed into a small region. It’s unbelievable! Sun sea & sand is a good way to sell to the tourist market, but it does sell the region short.

    1. Hi Charlie, glad you found it useful! Hey, that’s what RSS readers are for 🙂 I keep meaning to prune mine one day, but it’s still always crazy. Anyway the Worm Hole is one blog that would never get pruned!

  2. Thank you so much for this nod of appreciation, Andrew! It’s a pleasure to be in such varied and essentially Caribbean company. I raise my glass to Island Scribbler’s sentiment that there’s so much more to regional identity than a frolicksome beachy paradise — I feel like all the blogs you’ve highlighted here bear that out in their uniquely riveting ways.

    I’ve got a Caribbean Literary Links section on my blogroll at Novel Niche. While they’re mostly not book blogs, they are all bookish in nature. You might find the list useful/interesting/worth a perusal.

    1. Hi Shivanee

      You’re very welcome! And yes, I agree re the beach paradise thing, and that the blogs show that there’s a lot more going on.

      That’s a great resource, thanks for letting me know! I’ll edit the post to add in a link to it.

    1. Thanks – that looks very interesting. Although it’s not strictly a book blog, I’ll add it to the post, as I think it’s a great resource. Lots of great Caribbean writers to hear from, and am also interested in the Patrick French interview – loved his biography of VS Naipaul!

  3. Hi Andrew, Thank you for this list, with some useful links. As far as I know, the Island Fiction Series Editor is still active, but posts are few and far between. As you well know, It’s a lot of work to keep a blog going with all the other things a writer has to do.

    1. Hi Helen
      You’re welcome! Yes, it’s definitely hard to keep a blog going, and it’s sad to see some good ones going defunct or at least dormant. Hope to see more from the Island Fiction Series Editor. And your blog looks good too – I’ll add it to the post. Thanks for visiting!

    1. Hey Joanne! You’re welcome – now you see why I emailed you a week or two ago, after poking around on your site 🙂 Thought it was definitely worthy of inclusion.

    1. You are welcome! There are loads of book blogs out there, but not many from the Caribbean, so I thought it was worth putting together the list. Glad you found it useful!

    1. Great – glad it was useful. There are some interesting sites there, and I always like to discover bloggers from a different part of the world. Maybe you could do a list of Indian book bloggers one day…

  4. Great list, Andrew. Must have taken some time! Thanks for saving us the trouble. Will look through them when I get the chance. And best of luck with everything!

    a

    1. Hi Angela
      You’re welcome! Yes, I’ve been accumulating sites for a while now, since I came to Barbados, and so I thought I’d try to save other people the trouble. Thanks for stopping by!

  5. We have so enjoyed reading your blog and love that you are promoting the real Caribbean, would you mind if we posted a link, some of our readers would really enjoy your list.

    Island x

    1. Thanks very much! Of course, please feel free to post a link. I’m glad you commented, as it was great to discover your site. You have to set up an online shop though – it’s not fair to see all that mouth-watering food and not be able to order it 🙂

  6. Hi Andrew:

    We definitely need to get the word out about the vibrant literary arts movement in our region. Fortunately cyberspace has leveled the playing field. You have some great ones on this list and I was happy to see Geoffrey Philps’ in particular, since he mentored ME in this area.

    I’d like to invite you to visit Seawoman’s Caribbean Writing Opps.
    http://seawoman.wordpress.com

    I’d appreciate your feedback. Who knows – if you do a “Best Caribbean Book Blogs Part II”, I just MIGHT make it on. 🙂

    Thank you for shining on our work.

    1. Hi Sandra

      Thanks for visiting, and I’m really glad you mentioned your site. It looks wonderful! Can’t believe I didn’t find it before. That’s why I wanted to do this – it’s easy to let good sites go under the radar when you’re just doing general web searches.

      You don’t have to wait for Part II – I’ve added you now, in the Updates section 🙂

  7. hi Andrew,
    thank you for this..it is a great list..
    i wasn’t able to read all of them yet but i will find time to read them and then be back here to express my thoughts about each of them..
    but as of now, so thankful for sharing this.. this saves my time..

  8. Hi Andrew,

    Thank you so much for including Poets of the Caribbean on your list. This is a great honor, and I am sorry for my late comment. I just saw your list today and I am over the moon. Hope you are enjoying the rich, multilingual literature of the Caribbean (as well as the sun and beaches of Barbados of course!). You have some very good sites on your list and many are on my blog as favorites as well. I will add the ones I did not know of. Thanks again.

    1. Hi Yasmin
      You’re welcome – I was happy to include it. Found some great blogs as I was researching the list, and learned a lot about Caribbean literature. Alas, I’m no longer living in Barbados – am now in Crete. But still keeping up with Caribbean literature, which will always have a strong place in my heart. Thanks for stopping by 🙂

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