Chapel Hill/Durham Book Club Message Board › Book Suggestions for July - Non-White Authors

Book Suggestions for July - Non-White Authors

A former member
Post #: 128
Please use this thread to suggest books for July. The guiding genre is non-white authors! Let's face it, we read a lot of white people. Use this thread to suggest a book by a non-white author. Remember to tell us why you think it would be a good book for book club, and it would be helpful if you link to a review (or more info) of the book from another source (amazon, wikipedia, publisher's weekly).
user 8007769
Hillsborough, NC
Post #: 6
I vote for Sea of Poppies by Amitav Ghosh. It's a good adventure story, plus lots of commentary about globalization/diversity in the first half of the 19th century. He does a great job capturing the different voices of the characters and how they interact in a multi-lingual world.

Here's the publishers weekly blurb.

Starred Review. Diaspora, myth and a fascinating language mashup propel the Rubik's cube of plots in Ghosh's picaresque epic of the voyage of the Ibis, a ship transporting Indian girmitiyas (coolies) to Mauritius in 1838. The first two-thirds of the book chronicles how the crew and the human cargo come to the vessel, now owned by rising opium merchant Benjamin Burnham. Mulatto second mate Zachary Reid, a 20-year-old of Lord Jim–like innocence, is passing for white and doesn't realize his secret is known to the gomusta (overseer) of the coolies, Baboo Nob Kissin, an educated Falstaffian figure who believes Zachary is the key to realizing his lifelong mission. Among the human cargo, there are three fugitives in disguise, two on the run from a vengeful family and one hoping to escape from Benjamin. Also on board is a formerly high caste raj who was brought down by Benjamin and is now on his way to a penal colony. The cast is marvelous and the plot majestically serpentine, but the real hero is the English language, which has rarely felt so alive and vibrant. (Oct.)
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
"Ab" A.
Cary, NC
Post #: 139
Perfect Peace by Daniel Black ( link)

I haven't read this book yet, but it comes recommended and peaks my curiosity on its journey through issues of morality, sexuality, community and family. I am not natively from the South, but am intrigued by the books use of a rural south town as its backdrop.

An Amazon Review:
"When Emma Jean was a child, she was abused mentally and physically by her mean-spirited mother. She couldn't understand why her mother went to such great lengths to hate her but shamelessly showered her two older sisters with the love and the attention she craved.

Emma Jean marries Gustavus "Gus" Peace and from their union six sons are born. Pregnant with number seven, Emma Jean feels deep in her heart she will be blessed with a girl; a daughter she will love and cherish, unlike the way she was treated as a child. As fate will have it, she gives birth to a son; a beautiful son she will easily disguise as a girl and name Perfect. For eight years, sweet, adorable Perfect was the apple of her brothers' eyes and her parents' pride and joy. However, Emma Jean and Perfect's world is shattered when Perfect's true identity is discovered. Perfect's name is changed to Paul and he is forced to start living his life as a boy.

PERFECT PEACE grabs the reader in a tight hold and doesn't release them until the last page. Black's graphic writing allowed my mental images of the time and place in Swamp Creek, Arkansas flow through my mind with ease. The colorful, flawed characters and intricate story line caused my emotions to soar to different heights in various sections of the story; laughter, anger, happiness, and tears. PERFECT PEACE is a spectacular, soul-stirring literary gem!!!"

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