Day 2 – A Novel about Family:
Family is so important, but yet is so complex. It’s what supports us through difficulty and through happy events but can tear us to shreds and drive us batty through others. There are many interesting books out there where family is the focus and it seems the more dysfunctional the better the story. In my opinion, one of the novels that stood out in an African-American novel about family is If Beale Street Could Talk by James Baldwin.
Tish and Fonny are a young African-American couple in love. It’s Harlem in the 1970s and Sonny has been arrested and accused of a crime he hasn’t committed. Here’s where family comes in. Tish’s family is supportive and sacrificing because they believe in Tish and Fonny’s love, and equally in Fonny’s innocence, where Fonny’s family can’t wait for the ordeal to be over with, so that they can get on with their shallow, useless, and unsuccessful lives. They aren’t willing to do anything for Tish and unfortunately not for their son. If Beale Street Could Talk does an excellent job of depicting the fall out of family and life in the seventies for a black man unjustly accused.
14 Replies to “#ReadSoulLit Photo Challenge – Day 2”
Great choice – I read it YEARS ago. Here’s my FB post: #ReadSoulLit Photo Challenge – Day 2: A Novel About Family
My choice: Family by J. California Cooper
In this wise, beguiling, beautiful novel set in the era of the Civil War, an award-winning playwright and author paints a haunting portrait of Clora, born a slave, and four generations of her African-American family – how her blood flows from its African roots around the world, thus intermingling with that of other races, nationalities, and classes. Clora herself commits suicide but “lives” as the narrator of her family’s tale. I loved how her spirit looked in on her descendents forever loving and watching over them through time – as I hope mine do for me.
I so loved that novel! One of the best novels about family for sure. So glad I pushed myself to pick it up. Thanks Phyllis!
Loving all the great recommendations through your challenge Deidre! It’s kind of dangerous, but I am going to have such a great reading year as a result, or really dusty shelves as I try to cope with the book splurge!
That’s what I was hoping hoping for, loads of great recs. And just think we’re only on Day 2. 😉
How many days are there in this challenge?
“Ugly Ways” by Tina McElroy Ansa I loved the humor in this book and familiarity as well. Although it has been while since I read this just remembering the Lovejoy Sisters and their “Mudear” makes me smile. For me humor is extremely difficult to write, especially when dealing with family – past and present. Ms. Ansa has done a wonderful job. Also kudos to you Didi for this great idea. #ReadSoulLitPhotoChallenge
Thanks Rosa for participating and supporting! Ms. Ansa is on my TBR this month. I’ve been meaning to read her for a while and now is the moment. Thanks for the rec! You’ve definitely added something new to the discussion. ?
I have this waiting for me to be read at home! Cannot wait to read it, you made it sound wonderful. But then, it is Baldwin, and he is generally pretty amazing. I’m loving this challenge by the way! It’s a great idea.
I’m going to try and do it in October (Black History Month over here in Great Britain), so I’ll have to try and discover lots of books authored by black people over this year, otherwise every photo would end up being a James Baldwin novel because I’m too in love with his writing (it’s kind of a problem). My wishlist is filled with your recommendations already, so I’m sure I’ll have no trouble!
Well it would be interesting to do it in October. I’d definitely participate and announce it over on Booktube, instagram and Twitter. True Baldwin was brilliant but there are other greats out there. Henceforth the challenge to get recs from everywhere. Glad you’re enjoying it! ?tomorrow’s tag is YA/Middlegrade. Have you got ant ideas?
Aw thanks! I didn’t notice any other British booktube people talk about Black History Month last year which was really bad, but I didn’t want to make too big a deal and overstep my mark, you know? I probably should have tried harder to find more black booktubers/bloggers from the UK who were probably doing stuff. Must do that this year!
I’m very excited to read The Known World at some point, I bought it yesterday on a whim haha!
Ah dear, I didn’t have internet the last two days so the YA tag was yesterday oops! But one that’s stood out to me at work that sounds interesting is Terror Kid by Benjamin Zephaniah, which was released at the end of last year.
Well no worries for missing yesterday’s. You can put them up whenever. The idea is for everybody to enjoy the videos, links, and book recs. It too bad I didn’t see many Booktubers do anything in October. I think Bazpierce mentioned it and read some things. #ReadSoulLit is going pretty well considering many of the big Booktubers aren’t really talking about or supporting it. I’m having fun getting recs though. Thanks for supporting. You should put up ypur rec anyway for YA/Middle-Grade. 😉
Whats the connection to Beale Street Didi? The only place I know by that name is in Memphis – is there one in Harlem also maybe?
I hear it makes reference to a blues song from the early twentieth century called Beale Street Blues.
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