Laughter with ‘Dear White People’

•1,July 27, 2014 • Leave a Comment

The Newest ‘Dear White People’ Trailer Will Have You Rolling On The Floor With Laughter

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The buzz around “Dear White People” has flourished since its introduction at Sundance. Much of which can be accredited to a bundle of trailers and public announcement parodies released on the film’s YouTube page.

The newest trailer, posted on Tuesday, is perhaps the funniest yet.

The witty satire takes place on the campus of a fictional Ivy League campus, and follows the adventures of Black Student Union members as they navigate their racially charged college experiences.

“Dear White People” is set to premiere Oct. 17th, but watch the latest teaser for the film above.

Watch the trailer

 

Book review: The Lowland

•1,July 27, 2014 • Leave a Comment

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Reading Jhumpa Lahiri Politically

Jhumpa Lahiri does not like to be categorized as an immigrant writer, and her latest novel, The Lowland, is her strongest argument against that pigeonhole. Her discomfort with the label is understandable. After all, she has refreshingly little in common with diasporic writers like Salman Rushdie, Bharati Mukherjee, or Chitra Divakaruni. Unlike them, she does not brandish her immigrant status as an epistemologically superior vantage point, nor is she anxious to prove herself as a worthy native informant. Her writing is free of the exotic.

A second-generation immigrant, she is firmly grounded in the culture in which she was raised. Yet, growing up with parents for whom home would always be elsewhere, she gets the immigrant experience, especially its melancholia. Of what she knows, she writes masterfully. Indeed, prior to The Lowland, her fiction has been almost exclusively an engagement with immigrant angst in its many hues.

For The Lowland, partly set in Calcutta in the sixties and seventies, during the throes of the Maoist Naxalite movement, her ambitions are of a different order. She steps out of the sphere of navel-gazing immigrant fiction and frames the novel with a political movement of which she has no experiential knowledge. Like Lahiri’s earlier work, The Lowland made a splash as a finalist for both the prestigious Man Booker Prize and the National Book Award for Fiction, and yet, almost every major review of the novel has remarked on the stagnant quality of the narrative, the flat, detached characters, and the tepid pace. None, however, has identified the cause for this failure in an otherwise extraordinarily skilled writer. The single reason that is sometimes cited is Lahiri’s inability to translate her mastery of the short-story form into that of the novel. But her first novel, The Namesake, does not suffer from this supposed shortcoming, so that explanation remains unconvincing.

Further reading @ Jacobin Magazine

Man Booker Prize Longlist 2014 Announced

•1,July 27, 2014 • Leave a Comment
Man Booker longlist 2014

Twitter Medium for Short Story

•1,July 27, 2014 • Leave a Comment

David Mitchell1

‘Cloud Atlas’ Author Releases New Short Story Entirely On Twitter

Cloud Atlas author David Mitchell has released an original short story entirely on Twitter in order to promote his new book, The Bone Clocks.

Mitchell, who rarely uses the Twitter account, started tweeting the story on July 14. Throughout the course of six days and roughly 270 tweets, he released “The Right Sort,” a short story that takes place in the same fictional world as his upcoming novel.

The short story follows a young boy who takes some of his mother’s Valium and narrates the resulting drug trip. Mitchell notes that, in a way, Twitter is the perfect medium for the character’s jumble of disjointed drug-fueled thoughts.

Read further @ Huffington Post
His Cloud Atlas on my to read booklist. This book prbably too!

Impac Dublin Prize goes to Colombian Writer

•1,July 27, 2014 • Leave a Comment

Juan-Gabriel-Vasquez

Impac prize judge Maya Jaggi: how we chose this year’s winner

Colombian novelist Juan Gabriel Vásquez is not a lone talent, but part of a rising generation of authors just hitting their stride
Judging the International Impac prize – the €100,000 (£80,500) Dublin literary award that is the richest for a single novel written in, or translated into, English – is an excellent way to take the pulse of global literature.This year’s winning novel, The Sound of Things Falling by Juan Gabriel Vásquez, published by Bloomsbury in Anne McLean’s superb translation and named at a ceremony in the Irish capital on Thursday, rose from a longlist of 152 titles in 17 original languages. These are nominated not by publishers, whose choices may be steered by commercial dictates, but by more than 100 libraries, or communities of readers, around the world.

Five of the 10 shortlisted books are novels in translation, including A Death in the Family, part one of Karl Ove Knausgaard’s My Struggle (translated from the Norwegian by Don Bartlett), and Three Strong Women, by Marie NDiaye (translated from the French by John Fletcher). The shortlisted English-language writers ranged from Australian Michelle de Kretser to David Park of Northern Ireland. All their books persisted in our imaginations. Yet it was soon apparent to me and my fellow jurors – authors Tash Aw, Catherine Dunne, Giles Foden, and Maciej Świerkocki – that the laurels would go to a Latin-American writer.

Read further @ The Guardian

Good Reads on Afghanistan

•1,July 27, 2014 • Leave a Comment

MDG : Afghanistan from our World Library

For sure a good read is The Kite Runner. The Patience Stone is on my to read list.

The best books on Afghanistan: start your reading here

Our literary tour of Afghanistan takes in tales of war, kite-flying, the Taliban and patience stones.

The Kite Runner by Khaled Hosseini

Hosseini’s engaging coming of age story, set against Afghanistan‘s recent history, is an epic tale of love, betrayal, exile and redemption.

The Patience Stone by Atiq Rahimi

In a bare room in a war zone, a woman nurses her comatose husband, who has a bullet lodged in his neck.

Butcher & Bolt by David Loyn

In Afghanistan – the land no outsider can conquer – history keeps repeating itself as foreign invaders stubbornly refuse to learn from the past.

Read further @ The Guardian

African Writer Wins the Caine

•1,July 27, 2014 • Leave a Comment

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Photograph: Caine Prize 2014

Okwiri Oduor wins 2014 Caine Prize for African writing

Described as “Joycean in its reach,” Kenyan author’s short story My Father’s Head is named winner of £10,000 award.

Kenyan author Okwiri Oduor has won the 2014 Caine Prize for African Writing for her short story My Father’s Head.

Described as “an uplifting story about mourning,” Nairobi-born Oduor’s 2013 work begins with the narrator’s attempts to remember what her father’s face looked like as she struggles to cope with his loss, and follows her as she finds the courage to remember.

“Okwiri Oduor is a writer we are all really excited to have discovered,” said Scottish author and chief judge Jackie Kay, as the prize was presented at the Bodleian Library in Oxford tonight. “My Father’s Head’ is an uplifting story about mourning – Joycean in its reach. She exercises an extraordinary amount of control and yet the story is subtle, tender and moving. It is a story you want to return to the minute you finish it.”

Read further @ The Guardian

 
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