Day 2: Top #RSL Book of 2021
It was very difficult to choose just one top Read Soul Lit book from 2021. I read so many excellent books last year. So I decided to pick 3 – favorite nonfiction, favorite fiction, and favorite poetry collection. On to the books….
Yellow Wife – Sadeqa Johnson
Yellow Wife is a captivating historical fiction novel based on real people. The main character Pheby Delores Brown is born on a plantation in Charles City, Virginia. Her father is the master of the plantation and she has been promised that she will be set free on her 18th birthday. However things don’t go as planned and Pheby has to be stronger than ever to survive what comes her way. This novel is very well-written and you will be totally engrossed while reading. I could have read it in one sitting but had to go to work the next morning, so read it in two. Great for lovers of historical fiction. There are some pretty intense scenes but as a whole this is a slave narrative that’s told in a different way.
From Scratch: A Memoir of Love, Sicily, and Finding Home – Tembi Locke
I purchased this book in 2019 when it was released and hadn’t gotten to it so I decided to read it for #NonfictionNovember. I was so surprised how beautifully Tembi Locke told her story of meeting, falling in love, and subsequently facing their greatest challenge together. The story is told in 4 parts and ends with a few succulent Sicilian recipes. This is a great book for memoir lovers. Locke is great at expressing even the most difficult feelings. She does it with extreme care and we’re right there with her throughout. It’s as if we’re listening to a friend recounting important parts of his/her life. I loved this book so much that I took it on Christmas holiday with me and listened to the audiobook on the long car ride to my destination. Locke has a personable voice and read her story with a lot of intention. So I recommend the audiobook, which you can also find on Scribd.
I love poetry but I don’t think I read enough of it in a year. These past few years I’ve been trying to read at least 1 or 2 collections a year. So, last year Penguin Books UK sent me Wicked Enchantment for review. My goodness what a surprise! Firstly I hadn’t heard of Wanda Coleman and secondly when I saw that the edition was edited and introduced by Terrance Hayes I knew I was about to embark on something really special. Just have a listen. What do you think?