Fresh Off the Boat: When parents hurt more than heal

I’ll be honest everyone– I actually read this book a couple weeks ago, and have simply been mulling over what to write ever since. Finally, I figured I’d jump right in, and see if I can make this thought sound coherent.   Despite being loosely based off the text, ABC’s Fresh off the Boat is nothing like the book of the same name by restauranteur Eddie Huang. In the show, Constance Wu, a beautiful actress and thoughtful commentator on the state of Asians in American pop culture, contributes to a comedy about Asian-American life in common suburbs. Viewers laugh along, similarly to…

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“We Should All Be Feminists” is the feminist book we needed all along

“We Should All Be Feminists” | Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie | 49 pages| Vintage Books | Goodreads I love TedTalks, but I very rarely fully absorb the information the way I absorb written material. With that in mind, I picked up this little 8 dollar copy of Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie’s “We Should All Be Feminists,” which is essentially the written adaptation of her viral Tedx presentation (yes, the one that Beyoncé excerpted). If, like me, you’re the sort who likes to reread poignant sentences and sticky note facts to look up later, perhaps this is the better format for you. As a text,…

Book Review | The Fire This Time, edited by Jesmyn Ward

The Fire This Time |  edited by Jesmyn Ward | ECW Press | Pub: 8/02/2016 | Goodreads  Toward the end of his The Fire Next Time, Baldwin emphatically states that the inability to resolve its “racial nightmare” is a sin for which America will eventually be held accountable. Race, and whether American can ever overcome its legacy, isn’t something about which Baldwin comes to an simple conclusion. Jesmyn Ward begins her anthology The Fire This Time by pulling this specific quote from Baldwin’s meditation: “…If we do not dare everything, the fulfillment of that prophecy, recreated from the Bible in song by the slave, is upon us: God gave Noah the rainbow sigh, No…

Book Review | The Conjoined, by Jen Sookfong Lee

While cleaning out her late mother’s deep freezer days after her death, Jessica and her father find a dead body frozen at the bottom. They call the police, who then find a second body upon further inspection. The Conjoined is a fantastic emotionally-wrought crime drama that will get you thinking about everyone around you. Read my review!

Book Review | Under the Udala Trees, by Chinelo Okparanta

Under the Udala Trees | Chinelo Okparanta | 336 pages | Houghton Mifflin Harcourt | Goodreads | Amazon In her striking novel Under the Udala Trees, Chinelo Okparanta details the development of a young lesbian in 1960’s Nigeria. Ijeoma is a young girl when she begins to understand her sexuality, falling in love with a close friend. She’s barely older when she and Amina are caught embracing, after which she is sent to complete intensive bible study with her mother. “Nwoke na nwunye. Adam na Eve. Man and wife,” her mother repeats in their daily sessions. Ijeoma’s feelings remain unchanged, instead forcing…

BB & GT June Wrap Up!

The end of another month– and officially half way through the year. If you’ve fallen behind at all over these last few weeks, here’s a summary of what went down this month on Brown Books & Green Tea.  Teas I was obsessed with: Rumi Tea, Oolong Orange Blossom: This is technically a July tea since I bought it yesterday, but I’m highlighting it anyway since it tastes and smells absolutely amazing. I’ve loved citrus notes in my tea ever since I was little, when my favorite tea was Bigelow Constant Comment. I don’t drink black tea much anymore, but this one…

Book Review | Binti, by Nnedi Okorafor

It’s only 94 pages, but Binti is the perfect size to read in an afternoon. The plot starts quickly, with Binti deciding to leave home against her family’s wishes. She’s special in more ways than one, which has earned her a scholarship to university. Deciding to attend makes her the first of her kind to do so. With that context given in the first several pages, readers know that Binti is special. It’s during an awful massacre that she comes into her full potential.

Modern Romance: Exhibit A in why I hope I’m never single again

The title of this review is exactly how I felt about this book as a whole– dear God, I hope my current relationship is forever. Mainly because I need his wages to cover the cable bill, but also because I’m not sure I’d fit in today’s text-heavy dating scene. A primer on contemporary dating trends, Modern Romance is filled to the brim with actual data. Popular dating site Match allowed their research team (headed by co-author Eric Klinenberg of New York University) access to their data, providing a trove of information to bolster their online dating theories. Additionally, there were multigenerational…

Book Review |A House for Happy Mothers, by Amulya Malladi

  I love reading novels where circumstances lump together people from entirely different backgrounds. Pardon the shoddy analogy, but it’s almost like putting together random fruits and seeing if they work as a smoothie (relevant: I’m hungry). That’s what readers get in A House for Happy Mothers, by Amulya Malladi. After multiple heartbreaking miscarriages, Priya and Madhu decide it’s time to try something different. A relatively well-off couple, they decide to find a surrogate mother in India. Not only will this be a less expensive solution after their failed in-vitro fertilization, but they’ll be able to have an Indian woman carry their Indian child,…

Book Review | In the Country We Love, by Diane Guerrero

As a child, actress Diane Guerrero knew she wanted to be on stage. She would dress up to sing in their apartment, choosing between Mariah Carey and Whitney Houston ballads. Diane ran home from school after practicing her latest solo to find an empty house: rice on the stove, plantains half-sliced, and the newspaper on the table. Fourteen-year-old Diane knew something was wrong, and hid under the bed.