Tag Archives: BAEM writers

A Powerful Companion to ‘The Colour Purple’: ‘Possessing the Secret of Joy’ by Alice Walker (1992)

Alice Walker’s most famous novel is her 1982 classic, ‘The Colour Purple.’  In it, she takes an abused black teenager living in the deep South, and turns her story into a wonderfully life-affirming tale of female solidarity and the possibility … Continue reading

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A Dark Period of History: ‘The Book of Night Women’, by Marlon James (2009)

Marlon James’s Booker winning ‘A Brief History of Seven Killings‘ was one of my top reads of last year.  Not only was it a virtuosic view of a time and place I knew little about, it was written with such … Continue reading

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A Mouth Watering Read: ‘Like Water for Chocolate’ by Laura Esquivel (1989)

The last Mexican book I read was ‘Down the Rabbit Hole,’ Juan Pablo Villalobos’ demented tale of life at the very heart of a drug gang.  Reading ‘Like Water for Chocolate: A Novel in Monthly Instalments with Recipes, Romances and … Continue reading

Posted in Laura Esquivel, Mexican Literature, Reading in translation | Tagged , , , | 13 Comments

Two Short Japanese Books (and Food, Lots of Food): ‘Kitchen’ by Banana Yoshimoto (1987) and ‘Strange Weather in Tokyo’ by Hiromi Kawakami (2012)

I don’t want to go for glib connections within foreign fiction, but I’ve been really struck by two books that were placed high-up on my 2016 reading pile. Yoshimoto’s ‘Kitchen’ and Kawakami’s ‘Strange Weather in Tokyo’ both left me with … Continue reading

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Unexpectedly haunting: ‘Kiss of the Spider Woman’ by Manuel Puig (1976)

‘Something a little strange, that’s what you notice, that she’s not a woman like all the others.’ I almost feel guilty writing a review of this book because much of my joy in reading it was battling my confusion as I … Continue reading

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Where Outsiders Go: ‘Under the Udala Trees’ by Chinelo Okparanta (2015)

I had heard so much of the success of Okparanta’s ‘Under the Udala Trees’ in America, where it was published last year, that I decided to break my no-book-buying ambition for 2016.  To put this in context, the only other … Continue reading

Posted in Chinelo Okparanta, Nigerian Literature | Tagged , , , | 9 Comments