Tuesday, December 3, 2019

Seven London novels by writers of color

J.R. Ramakrishnan is a writer and editor. Her work has appeared in the New York Times Book Review, Electric Literature, Harper's Bazaar, Harper's, amongst other publications. Her fiction has appeared in [PANK] and Mixed Company.

At Electric Lit Ramakrishnan tagged seven novels that celebrate the 40% of Londoners who aren't white, including:
Small Island by Andrea Levy

Novelist Andrea Levy’s father arrived in the U.K. on the Empire Windrush, the ship which brought the first large group of colonial subjects from the West Indies in 1948. The Windrush generation helped build today’s Britain (and most certainly London, its language, and its culture). In Small Island, Levy tells the stories of Jamaicans, Gilbert and Hortense, as well as those of Queenie and Bernard, a white couple with whom they become entangled. Set in 1948, the novel moves between the characters, back to World War II, and across the world to India, and back to London with a twist at its end. Worth a read in light of the recent Windrush scandal. Another offering of Windrush stories to check out is the nonfiction Windrush: The Irresistible Rise Of Multi-Racial Britain by Mike Phillips and Trevor Phillips.
Read about the other entries on the list.

Small Island is among Virginia Nicholson's ten top books about women in the 1950s, Martin Fletcher's five best books on nations and lives in transition, and Gillian Cross's top ten books that throw everything you think you know upside down.

--Marshal Zeringue