The Good Immigrant – Edited by Nikesh Shukla – MINI BOOK REVIEW

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“How does it feel to be constantly regarded as a potential threat, strip-searched at every airport?

Or be told that, as an actress, the part you’re most fitted to play is ‘wife of a terrorist’? How does it feel to have words from your native language misused, misappropriated and used aggressively towards you? How does it feel to hear a child of colour say in a classroom that stories can only be about white people? How does it feel to go ‘home’ to India when your home is really London? What is it like to feel you always have to be an ambassador for your race? How does it feel to always tick ‘Other’?

Bringing together 21 exciting black, Asian and minority ethnic voices emerging in Britain today, The Good Immigrant explores why immigrants come to the UK, why they stay and what it means to be ‘other’ in a country that doesn’t seem to want you, doesn’t truly accept you – however many generations you’ve been here – but still needs you for its diversity monitoring forms.

Inspired by discussion around why society appears to deem people of colour as bad immigrants – job stealers, benefit scroungers, undeserving refugees – until, by winning Olympic races or baking good cakes, or being conscientious doctors, they cross over and become good immigrants, editor Nikesh Shukla has compiled a collection of essays that are poignant, challenging, angry, humorous, heartbreaking, polemic, weary and – most importantly – real.”

Click Here To Read My Mini Review!

A Change is Gonna Come by Various – BOOK REVIEW

a change 2.pngA Change is Gonna Come is a collection of short stories/poetry by various authors (both debut authors and already published) with the aim to “give creative space to those who have been historically had their thoughts, ideas and experiences oppressed”. This anthology covers a range of topics, with a list of issues raised at the end of the book if you wish to find out more information or get trigger warnings, which I think is a fantastic idea and should be done more frequently with other books! Other publishers/authors TAKE NOTE!!

I often find it hard to review an anthology as an overall rating doesn’t reflect all the stories in the book, but this is perhaps the first anthology where I feel all the pieces of writing were equally as good, each with their own unique message. There’s something for everyone – whether you’re into historical fiction, fantasy or poetry, this YA anthology reflects a larger range of genres.

My favourite 3 pieces were….

Marionette Girl by Aisha Bushby – a short story about a girl who is obsessed with Harry Potter and has severe OCD, which she has to try and overcome after there is a sudden incident which means she cannot follow her usual routine.

A Refuge by Ayisha Malik – Sabrina goes to help and volunteer in a refugee camp but meets Homa, a young girl who lives there by herself. They form a brief friendship and Sabrina does everything she can to try and help her.

Fortune Favours the Bold by Yasmin Rahman – There has just been a terrorist attack in a nightclub with seven fatalities and Zaibah fears the next time she goes out in public because of the blame and harassment she receives because she wears a headscarf. That’s until she comes across a girl who has she admires for standing up for herself…

I definitely recommend this anthology, whether you usually read YA or not. There is something for everyone and the emphasis on characters which are usually marginalised and unfortunately ignored in the wider world is fantastic to read! I really hope there are similar anthologies like this to come in the future!!

*I received a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review*


Have you read this book? Are you planning to?

Let me know in the comments!

Marie

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