Book Review: The Protectors’ Pledge: Secrets of Oscuros

Another great review.

The Protectors’ Pledge: Secrets of Oscuros by Danielle Y.C. McClean is the 2016 third place winner of the Burt Award for Caribbean Literature.

JV is an adventurous eleven-year-old boy on vacation from school. He lives with his grandmother who is the quintessential Caribbean granny; she loves to feed everyone who comes to her house. She is also the ‘medicine woman’ in their village.

JV has plans of exploring the forest for the vacation, he is very excited, but his grandmother and other villagers discourage him from doing so because of their suspicions and beliefs that the forest is the home of mythical/folklore creatures.

JV defies his grandmother and goes further into the forest that she has instructed him to. On his first visit, he goes with two friends, but they leave separately, and JV sees a strange woman in a river that makes him curious about who or what she was. He suspects that…

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Book Review: Girlcott by Florenz Webbe Maxwell

#CaribbeanBookReview #BurtAward

Girlcott by Florenz Webbe Maxwell is the 2016 second place winner of the Burt Award for Caribbean Literature.

Fifteen year old Desma could not be more excited about her upcoming sweet sixteen birthday plans. She has also recently won a very prestigious scholarship that would give her the opportunity to become an Actuary.  Everyone is happy for her and her life is seemingly perfect until a boycott threatens to disrupt, even cancel her birthday lime at the local cinema.

A group named the Progressive Group has initiated opposition to segregation in Bermuda. At first, Desma is very annoyed at the disruption until several unsavoury incidents happen to her and her family. She changes her view and decides to do something about it.

This is another deserving book from the Burt Awards. This book can be of interest to children in primary and secondary schools. It shows the growth in Desma’s mindset when she…

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Inner City Girl by Colleen Smith-Dennis


Inner city girl

The strange thing about dialect is that it isn’t universal. It enriches a book for a particular market but sets it apart for another. Whenever I try to figure out what a “slang/colloquial” word may mean, it usually isn’t what it means. Months after in conversation I get that enlightened look and have to go back to the book.

Inner City girl started with heavy dialect. The conversation was rich enough to have me regretting I ever lent out my copy of “Cote ci Cote la.”

The book however would be nothing without it. The heavy dialect did more to frame the poverty than any other words. I could almost hear Martina’s mother’s slurs and understood Martina’s need to be different. The book outgrew the dialect as Martina grew: simple and subtle. The story was unique, a passionate advocate for overcoming life obstacles with determination. Another good read.

This review was completed through Caribbean Books Foundation review programme contact marsha(a)

Musical Youth by Joanne HillHouse



This was a sweet coming of age romance and I found myself saying awwww way too often.

Shaka is the guy who falls hard for his girl and his animated crew lives the romance with him. Zahara is complicated but the music frees her, each cord brings her to herself. Many times in Caribbean books you reminisce about how your childhood compared and Pappy was it for me: holding everyone and everything together with simple finesse that you didn’t even notice it. Grandparents are wonderful.

I have to admit that I was once weary of reading Caribbean fiction because they tend to get dark quickly and I don’t read book to be depressed. I am pleased to say that Joanne’s Musical Youth was refreshing and uplifting. Write on Joanne, write on.

This in no way takes away from the book but after reading the skin tone of the girl on the cover seemed off.

This review was completed through Caribbean Books Foundation review programme contact marsha(a)

All Over Again by A-dziko Simba Gegele



Growing up there must have been someone in your life to make you understand A-dziko’s words … “That is what he says and you wonder how that happens, how talking means you are a big man and not talking means you are a big man. And just as you are trying to figure out if you should keep quiet, or if you should talk or if you should run, out comes more unreasonableness.”

All over again captivated me and took me back years.

I laughed out loud and fell in love with each one of the characters. I will recommend this book to everyone not just Caribbean nationals because the theme is universal.

Growing up is a journey that is all yours and no one can live it for you.


This review was completed through Caribbean Books Foundation review programme contact marsha(a)