• Book Review

    Born a Crime: Stories From a South African Childhood

    Warnings: Racism, Violence, Domestic Abuse My Thoughts For those that don’t already know who Trevor Noah is, he is a comedian from South Africa that is now the current host of The Daily Show, taking the place of Jon Stewart when he retired. Trevor is an accomplished polyglot, speaking 9 languages fluently and has some fluency in several more. In much of his comedy, he talks about his difficulties with racial identity having been born during apartheid to an African mother and a Swiss father. Apartheid was a system of institutionalized segregation in South Africa that lasted from the 1940s to the 1990s. The book is bursting at the seams…

  • Book Review // Memoir

    Minor Feelings: An Asian American Reckoning

    Warnings: Drug Use, Racism, Violence, Discussions of Sexual Assault My Thoughts This book is quite simply incredible. It was so true to my experiences as an Asian American woman; I laughed during some parts, cried at others, felt enraged and melancholy all at once. It is a timely book to read now with the widespread hate crimes against Asians that has been raging in the United States after the COVID-19 pandemic. Hong presents a series of personal and political essays that detail the impact that racial perceptions of Asians and Asian culture have on various areas of the author’s life as a Korean American woman. I appreciated that the author…

  • Book Review

    Sisters’ Entrance

    Warnings: Violence, Racism, Islamophobia, Trauma My Thoughts I’ve struggled to gather my thoughts on this collection, I was just so blown away and overwhelmed by the emotions elicited by this book. The poetry collected here comes from a very personal place for the author, who is a Sudanese refugee that survived the war and genocide in Darfur. Some poems were heavy and spoke of her traumatic experiences such as in People Like Us and The Bride. Others, like Why I Haven’t Told You Yet, were more light-hearted but still carry a strong message. All of these poems pulled together shape the author, her family, her experiences, and her outlook on…

  • Book Review

    Narrative of the Life of Frederick Douglass, an American Slave

    My Thoughts What blows my mind about this book is how incredibly readable and accessible it is, considering the fact that it was written over a century ago. Frederick Douglass was a fugitive slave and a prominent leader of the abolitionist movement. While in captivity, Douglass worked hard to teach himself how to read and write, viewing literacy and education as his means to freedom. “Power concedes nothing without demand. It never did and it never will… Men may not get all they pay for in this world, but they must certainly pay for all they get.” The narrative discusses Douglass’s experiences as both a plantation slave and a personal…

  • Book Review

    The Hate U Give

    My Thoughts WOW. I’ve seen so much talk about this book and I was fearful that it wouldn’t live up to the hype but how wrong I was to worry. The Hate U Give is absolutely astounding and is one of the best debut novels I’ve read in a long time. This is such a great book about the teen experience in America and covers an extremely wide range of topics – the black lives matter movement, police brutality, racism, activism, gang violence, drug abuse, interracial dating, consent, infidelity, relationship violence, blended families, the duality between the hood and suburban life, the list goes on and on. The story starts…

  • Book Review

    If They Come for Us

    My Thoughts My goodness, what an astounding collection of poetry! I was absolutely dazzled by this debut collection and I’m honestly ashamed that I was granted a review copy and did not get to read it sooner. Asghar speaks to a generation of Asian American women with a great deal of understanding and empathy. There were several times where a poem hit close to home, particularly in the sections about needing to cover up one’s race and religion, or of the shame that comes with losing one’s native language. “You speak a language until you don’t. Until you only recognize it between your auntie’s lips. Your father was fluent in…