The other day, I hit 200 followers, and 1,000 likes! Thanks everyone for all of the support! Here’s to 200 more followers!
I wasn’t diggin’ this week’s Top 10 Tuesday topic, so I switched it up a little bit. I actually think I’m pretty good at representing the books I love, and the books I hate (no one’s ever accused me of hiding my opinions…). Instead of simply doing 10 great books I haven’t mentioned recently, I’m doing 5 books that deserve more shine, and 5 books that can exit stage left. As always, feel free to leave some additions in the comments!
5 Books That Deserve More Shine
1.Discourse on Colonialism, by Aime Cesaire: Have you ever read a book and wished you had the author’s smarts? That’s how I felt after reading Discourse on Colonialism. Aime Cesaire, one of the fathers of the negritude intellectual movement, was an absolutely brilliant man. This book was required reading during my first semester of college, alongside Pedagogy of the Oppressed (see below) and Wretched of the Earth. Each of these books are mighty all on their own, but together? They pack a mean punch.
2. An Indigenous Peoples’ History of the United States, by Roxanne Dunbar-Ortiz: I have a confession, y’all. I haven’t finished this book yet. Historical books take me twice as long to read, because I contextualize the history I’m reading within the history I already know. However, I haven’t heard nearly enough about this book, considering how much I like it already.
3. Pedagogy of the Oppressed, by Paulo Freire: Anyone who knows me is aware that this is one of my top 10 most influential books– ever. It’s an extremely heavy read, as you can likely tell from the title, but Paulo Freire is a genius. This book was required reading in the first semester of college, alongside Discourse, but it really deserves a reread.
4. Jubilee, by Margaret Walker: Brown Girl Reading and One Small Paw hosted a Black History Month readalong for Jubiliee. I couldn’t join, because I already had a crammed dance card, but this is yet another book that I recommend. It’s a big one, I warn you, but its entirely worth it. This book was required reading freshman year of high school, and was probably my favorite pick of that entire year.
5. The Things They Carried, by Tim O Brien: Yet another of my required books, this time for 12th grade English class. It’s one of the few books over which my non-reading boyfriend and I can bond. Yes, it’s about war, but it’s more about the people who fight these wars.
5 Books That Can Exit Stage Left
1. Chronicles of Narnia, by C.S. Lewis: I tried to read this series. I really did. It’s just such a snooze fest, that I didn’t even particularly want to see the movies, either. I’ve enjoyed other C.S. Lewis books, though, such as The Four Loves.
2. Heart of Darkness, by Joseph Conrad: One of the worst assignments of 10th grade was having to juxtapose Heart of Darkness with Ellison’s Invisible Man. Each student was given a different book to compare and contrast with Ellison– I thought it was somewhat insensitive essay my teacher to make Heart of Darkness among the choices. If I had the chance to write that paper again, I’d write the hell out of that essay, but at 14, I don’t think I was quite ready. I just ended up…angry and confused.
3. 50 Shades of Grey, by E.L James: I’m not one of the people who thought 50 Shades of Grey was awful. I was highly entertained throughout the trilogy, even though I’d never date Christian or Anastasia Grey. That said, the book seemed to inspire way too much adoration and vitriol from both sides of the aisle. It’s really not enough of a series to feel that strongly about, guys. Lets just let it fade away, and make room for more Sylvia Day.
4. Faces at the Bottom of the Well, by Derrick Bell: This is the only book from our book club that I haven’t enjoyed thus far. I just wasn’t a fan of the book’s format, and the author’s writing style. I like books that say what they need to say, and I thought the use of allegory detracted from this. I’m not sure if there is/was hype surrounding this book, but I just wish this book would have stayed away from my book club. Which is really a shame, because it had so much to say.
5. The Giver, by Lois Lowry: I never, ever, ever understood the hype around The Giver. It just wasn’t special. It’s mandatory reading where I live, as part of our middle grade dystopian unit. Just the idea of putting The Giver alongside real books such as Brave New World and 1984 makes me cringe.
What books do you wish had gotten a little bit more shine? Which books do you wish people would stop talking about ? Let me know in the comments below!