Remember that time we promised to have information on September’s book club posted the first day of the month? And then that other time that September 1 came and went and we posted nothing?
So here’s the deal. When you work in higher ed, as we do, and then enlist two…
If you don’t read a book for Read a Book Day, how will you tell everyone you already knew what was going to happen when it eventually gets turned into a TV show?
What are you reading today?
"If there were a better, clearer, shorter way of saying what the fiction says, then why not scrap the fiction?" - J.M. Coetzee
White Teeth (Zadie Smith)
OOOKAAAY I know it’s been way too long since we’ve posted a book review, but here’s one.
White Teeth by Zadie Smith is probably one of the funniest books I’ve read in a long time and that’s spectacular because the topics she handles are distinctly un-funny. There’s racism, there’s war, there’s socio-economic disparity, there’s animal testing, there’s extremism in many forms, there’s broken up families, and ultimately it’s a book about colonization.
While White Teeth hits all those major issues (and even more that I’m not listing because nobody wants a list of world problems as a review), the reason I can say it’s funny is not because this reviewer is sociopathic, but because White Teeth is ultimately about individuals who often say quite funny things.
The story starts Archie and Samad two friends from different continents who fight a war together and struggle to understand their families and the changing times. There’s Clara, Archie’s wife, who is a former Jehovah’s witness raised by Hortense who immigrated to England from Jamaica. There’s Samad and Alsana’s twins Millat and Magid who end up experiencing very different upbringings, but are both tied to Archie and Clara’s daughter— Irie.
These two families make up the basis of the story traveling through different character’s perspectives and antics, and it’s through these people that others are introduced and the plot unfolds.
I’m not spoiling anything, but Smith writes incredible voices for these characters and her own narrative voice is stunning. It’s not stereotypical “light” reading, but it moves well and is a joy.