Inner City Girl by Colleen Smith-Dennis

A BOOK REVIEW

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)caribbeanbook.org.

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Musical Youth by Joanne HillHouse

A BOOK REVIEW

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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)caribbeanbook.org.

All Over Again by A-dziko Simba Gegele

A BOOK REVIEW

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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.

Cheers!

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