American writers

Currently Reading: Harper Lee (To Kill a Mockingbird)

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Acquired this copy my senior year of high school when helping our English teacher & Department Chair clear out one of their storage rooms. She allowed us to take books for free 🙂

Felt the urge to re-read and actually finish this classic *coughs 15 years later.* In high school, it wasn’t due to a lack of interest that I didn’t complete my reading session, but circumstance. I’d  fallen behind on reading assignments due to illness, and in an attempt to balance all of  my other classes stayed behind the rest of my English one. Every near catch up was still a chapter or few behind, until the time came we were going to watch the film adaptation in class. I figured what was the point? The rest of the story would be spoiled so, I settled with just enjoying the movie.
This urge was probably less out of the blue and more a subliminal encouragement when factoring in the kinds of things happening around the United States socially and politically and a not too distant announcement of Harper Lee releasing another book (simultaneously sequel and prequel), Go Set a Watchman, this summer. A work that I find intriguing given its content and the timing for Lee to pop back on literary radar in preparation for it. Keep Reading

Currently Reading: Ralph Ellison (Invisible Man)

Invisible Man by Ralph Ellison

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© Image courtesy of L.A. Lanier’s Instagram (@thesquibbler)

I didn’t snag this one on a whim. It was recommended, and over the years I heard good things, but it took me a while to acquire simply because I kept forgetting when on the prowl for new reads and expanding my collection. I decided it would be next because it was more challenging at 580 pages than the other works I’ve read this month. I may have mentioned I’m not the fastest of readers, and because of this I can easily talk myself out of choosing a book to read. Anything beyond 400 pages starts to look intimidating and the “task” of getting through it can be overwhelming, especially if anyone else knows I’m supposedly reading it. And I just don’t trust myself  to be able to tackle the works within “reasonable” amounts of time. But the only way to help improve my reading speed is to keep reading and keep taking on those that take longer to digest, at least on the surface. So far, I’m a little more than halfway through, and pleased with the pace I’ve been going, almost to the point of proud. But that won’t happen until I can check it off as read. Invisible Man hasn’t disappointed either. The writing is far more engaging than I was expecting based on the synopsis and so well executed. Some paragraphs sing almost poetically while others push you to read more, and it makes me pause to reflect and consider things about myself and those around me. And really it’s just been the kind of book I need to read at this moment in my life. So if you were one of few that encouraged me to pick it up. Thank you.

Currently Reading: Lorraine Hansberry (A Raisin in the Sun)

A Raisin in the Sun by Lorraine Hansberry

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© Image courtesy of L.A. Lanier’s Instagram (@thesquibbler)

As part of the Advanced Placement English curriculum during my junior year (11th grade) of high school, we had the option of reading one of two plays. This and The Glass Menagerie by Tennessee Williams. I read the latter with no problem. I purchased both works, but never got around to reading A Raisin in the Sun. Unfortunately, I think some of the reason I didn’t select Hansberry was because there was this sense of you should learn more about your heritage. But when it came to the students it seemed as if ones blackness was called into question if you weren’t reading all of these prominent black female writers when given the option (Toni Morrison, naturally another). I certainly appreciated the fact that a southern suburban high school, gave us the option, and didn’t insist on only reading white American male authors. However, all the other females in my class of black heritage were reading it, and this notion of we’re going to determine who you are was a huge turn off. So, I resisted. Plus the synopsis for Menagerie appealed more to me. What amused me later, was when we watched film adaptations, these students were some of the first who seemed disinterested in either play. Further encouraging me to remove myself from this display of false pride flag waving. Years later, it’s still in my unread pile…until now. After reading one play I was in the mood for another and thought what better time to rectify this wrong that was no fault of Hansberry’s, but self-exploring adolescent circumstances.

If interested in a written review or just to hear my opinions on the work let me know in the comments or contact me 🙂