As of yesterday, I had finished my Goodreads.com reading challenge by finishing my 50th book this year. I decided to look at my own challenge to read more Diverse Narrators and see where I am in it and sadly, I’m not any further along then my last update. I have books picked out for some categories but I still haven’t read them and I still don’t know about the others. So dear friends of the internet, help me out with some book recommendations. What should I read to for the following.
A Book with a Trans Narrator I thought about using Alex Fierro from Magnus Chase and the Gods of Asgard: The Ship of the Dead but the story is only from Magnus point of view so that’s out. I’ve read good reviews for If I was your Girl by Meredith Russo. So I’ll think I’ll try that one but do you know of any other good book with a Trans Narrator?
A Book with an African Narrator I’ve settled on Born a Crime by Trevor Noah because everyone I know who has read it has loved it and I do love him on the Daily Show. Of course, Akata Witch by Nnedi Okorafor I’m also interested in too.
A Book with an Asian Narrator I thought about using Warcross by Marie Lu but Emika Chen is Asian American and I already have two books for that one and Hideo Tanaka who is British Japanese is not the narrator of the story, only Emika. A friend recommended Pachinko by Mi Jin Lee but I’m not sure.
A Book with a Native American Narrator Sadly, I’m not sure. Sherman Alexie’s books? Has anyone read Alyson Noel’s Soul Seekers series?
A Book with an Indigenous Mexican Narrator I’m even more loss on this one. I thought for a second about All the Crooked Saints by Maggie Stiefvater but by the beginning of the story, the Soria’s have lived in Colorado for over a century and the story is more about the family now then their pasts. So any suggestions?
I’m open to anything. Fiction, Non-fiction, fantasy, contemporary, romance. Whatever you got I’m up for it. Leave your suggestions in the comments below or hit me up on our Twitter @StacksXLiveX and Facebook
Lately some of the books we have read are being turned into TV shows and we couldn’t be happier about it. Here’s three that will be hitting the airwaves in the next couple of years.
The first being The Raven Cycle by Stacks Fave Maggie Stiefvater. It’s still in development but making progress. It’s found a home on Syfy with Catherine Hardwick of Twilight fame at the helm. Now this series is perfect for a series. There is really just too much for a movie. Too much of it’s weirdness and nuances would have to be cut out to make it fit into a two hour movie. As a TV show, we can get all the adventures of Blue and the Raven boys and also expand on the people of Henrietta. I’m particularly hopeful they dip deeper into the ladies of 300 Fox Way. I’ve been dying to know more about Maura, Calla and Persephone. Like how did they even meet?
Who Fears Death by Nnedi Okorafor has been optioned by HBO and produced by George R.R. Martin. This is exciting because it takes place in a post-nuclear-holocaust Africa meaning an all black cast. Yeah diversity on TV! I’m not sure how this will play as a TV series. It wasn’t a very long book but plenty of room to expand on the universe. Go more into Onyesonwu’s people and the conflict between the Okeye and Nuru. If you are squirmish about some of the violence in Game of Thrones this is going to be any better. There were several scenes in the book that were very hard for me to read. I’m not sure how they are going to do them on TV, even if it is HBO. I can definitely tell you that there will be nothing like this on TV and the fact that HBO and George R.R. Martin are taking it on is impressive. Almost makes you forget that they are also trying to make a TV show about the Confederacy. Almost
Who Fears Death maybe produced by George R.R. Martin and HBO but in my mind N.K. Jemisin’s novel The Fifth Season is probably closer to Game of Thrones in scale of epic story telling. The Hugo winning novel was picked up by TNT earlier this week. I’m not even sure how they will be able to present this on screen without giving too much away. It also means more diversity on primetime television as the main characters are all women of color. If this done right it’s going to be impressive. This also reminds me I better get on to reading book two in the Broken Earth series, The Obelisk Gate.
Happy Thanksgiving to all who are celebrating today. In keeping with tradition here at Stacks, we are going to share what literary things we have been grateful for this year. I’m going to go first.
I am thankful for my Nook Tablet. Now this is something that I have never thought I would say. I bought it because I got a heavy employee discount on it when it first came out but I haven’t used it all that much until this year. Since leaving B&N, I’ve had to buy more books than I have ever had before. I much prefer the real deal when it comes to reading but I have to admit the convenience of my Nook has its benefits. The books themselves are cheaper. I don’t have to get dressed to the bookstore. I don’t have to wait for them to be delivered and they take up space in my apartment. My place is already overrun with books as is. Plus, my nook is a little easier to read on the train to work because it doesn’t take up as much space. So thank you, Nook. You will never fully replace books for me but you have come in handy.
I am thankful for #Weneedmorediversebooks movement. It has made me aware of my own privilege which I never really thought about. I’m sure if you look through the books that I read you will noticed that they are mostly all women but you also will noticed that they are also mostly all white. And their characters are also mostly white as well. I’ve been trying to be find more authors of color, who are from different backgrounds from me but also look for books with protagonists who are from different cultures. I’ll admit that I still have work to do but I am trying. Thank you for Sabaa Tahir, Marie Lu, Julie Kagawa and Nnedi Okorafor just to name a few. I hope that 2016 will bring new authors and new voices.
I am thankful for book clubs because it forced me to read books that I probably would never have read on my own. Also, it’s also fun to talk books with friends.
I’m thankful for J.K. Rowling’s twitter. I’m thankful for her in general but following her on twitter just reaffirms everything I have ever thought about her and that I really want to be her friend. She’s smart, quick, funny and does not suffer trolls. She truly is a bright spot on the internet.
And finally I’m thankful for all you reading. Kate and I started this blog for fun. A way to keep connected and talk books but I think it’s fair to say it has passed our own expectations. I thought that maybe a few of our real life friends would read it and comment but to have complete strangers from all over the world, like our blog and leave comments has been so much fun for us. If it wasn’t for you, I’m not sure that Kate and I would have been as motivated to keep updating the blog. So with complete sincerity, thank you.
Beth has already done a short review on this book so here I am to give a longer, spoilerier review. This is a dystopian novel set in a future post-nuclear-holocaust Sudan. It follows the life of Oyesonwu, a woman born of rape and blessed with magic powers that she will use to change the world. This novel did not shy away from presenting the horror of rape, weaponized rape, genocide and female genital mutilation. Okorafor has a powerful voice and I am really glad to have read this book. I am also looking forward to reading more by this author. After the cut, though, I am going to discuss some problematic things in this novel.
I’m going to be brief because I don’t want to be spoilery and also want to wait until Kate finishes it to talk in more detail. I will say it was a truly powerful novel. A dystopian novel set on the African continent. Onyesonwu is born from rape and because of it is an outcast but she has a destiny that will change the world. I admit that I haven’t ready many books that take place in Africa so this was a new voice for me. At times it confusing and it was also horrifying. Nnedi Okorafor does not shy away from the ugliest and violent moments of the novel and it’s equal parts terrifying as it is uncomfortable. It’s an unflinching portrait of racism and sexism and how both corrupt a society. Onye is not only a woman but also Ewu, a child born of violence from an Okeke women and Nuru man. She is shunned by most and seen as both worthless by many more. When it becomes clear that she is more then normal, she repeatedly turned away from the local sorcerer not because she isn’t extraordinary but because she is a woman. One has to wonder, how differently things would have turned out if she started training when she first asked to but I guess we will never know. When she finally unleashes her power and saves the day it’s a sight to see. My favorite part of the novel is the friendship from Onye and Luyu. At first, they are just two girls who are in the same class, who are forced together thanks to a common experience shall we say but as they grow they become closer. They give each other strength and support. They each show bravery and different ways. I truly don’t believe that Onye would have made it through without her. Mwita may be the love her life and soulmate, more then a soulmate really but it’s Luyu who is the back bone. She keeps everyone grounded in a way. Her bravery is truly inspiring because unlike Onye and Mwita who have varying degree of powers, Luyu is nothing but human but she knows there are bad things happening and will do anything to help Onye stop them. This isn’t an easy book to read but what the characters go through are not meant to be easy. If you feel uncomfortable because it’s supposed to be uncomfortable. You should be horrified at the lengths people will go for an idea and belief. It truly was a great book.