I had a good reading month, including a few books from my trip to a Barbadian bookshop, plus a couple for the Japanese Literary Challenge. Here are the details.
I had a good reading month, including a few books from my trip to a Barbadian bookshop, plus a couple for the Japanese Literary Challenge.
Dog-Heart by Diana McCaulay
What happens when a well-meaning, privileged middle-class woman tries to help a street kid from one of the poorest parts of Kingston? This novel by Jamaican writer Diana McCaulay explores this fascinating question with a lot of sensitivity to issues of race, class and inequality. A great start to my reading year.
Ms Ice Sandwich by Mieko Kawakami
Next up was a book for this endearing Japanese novella about a young boy with a crush on a woman who works at the sandwich counter in the local grocery store. Read my review of Ms Ice Sandwich here.
Lote by Shola van Reinhold
This is a book that definitely deserves a full review, which I hope to write soon. It’s hard to encapsulate in a few sentences: the plot will sound dull if I tell it to you, but this is a novel about art, beauty, race, sexuality and so much more. It took a while to get into it, but I loved it in the end.
Snow by John Banville
I love John Banville’s writing (you can read my reviews of some of his other books here). This one was a bit disappointing, though—it was a fairly predictable detective novel about a murder in the library of a country house. It was OK, but not as good as his other novels like Birchwood.
How to Blow Up a Pipeline by Andreas Malm
Don’t worry, this is not a how-to manual. It’s a very coherent argument in favour of taking more direct action to protest against climate change. Malm is clear that he’s not arguing for violence against people, only damaging property, and he uses historical examples to show that many of the famous “non-violent” movements of the past also used similar tactics.
What Have You Read Lately?
I’d love to hear your thoughts on any of these books, as well as your recommendations from your own reading. Leave a comment below!