Author: Sisonke Msimang
Summary: “Brutally and uncompromisingly honest, Sisonke’s beautifully crafted storytelling enriches the already extraordinary pool of young African women writers of our time.” ―Graça Machel, widow of former South African president Nelson Mandela
Born in exile, in Zambia, to a guerrilla father and a working mother, Sisonke Msimang is constantly on the move. Her parents, talented and highly educated, travel from Zambia to Kenya and Canada and beyond with their young family. Always the outsider, and against a backdrop of racism and xenophobia, Sisonke develops her keenly perceptive view of the world. In this sparkling account of a young girl’s path to womanhood, Sisonke interweaves her personal story with her political awakening in America and Africa, her euphoria at returning to the new South Africa, and her disillusionment with the new elites. Confidential and reflective, Always Another Country is a search for belonging and identity: a warm and intimate story that will move many readers.
Sisonke Msimang is one of the most exciting contemporary female black voices in literature. Now based in Perth, Australia, she regularly contributes to publications like The Guardian, the Huffington Post, and the New York Times. She has over 20,000 followers on Twitter @Sisonkemsimang. Her TED Talk,“If a story moves you, act on it,” has been viewed over 1.3 million times. (Goodreads)
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Author: Wyclef Jean, Anthony Bozza
Summary: Musician, producer, and actor, Wyclef Jean describes growing up in Haiti so poor, he actually ate dirt. Coming to New Jersey at nine, Jean was bullied throughout school for his Haitian background. Music became his refuge: spirituals at church, where his harsh father was a preacher; jazz and band music in school; and, later, rap and hip-hop with his friends. Continue reading “Purpose: An Immigrant’s Story”
Author: Irene Perali
Summary: Have you ever left everything behind to follow a dream…which is not yours?
The novel Followives is all about this: five intertwined stories of wives following their husbands who moved from Italy to California to pursue unique career opportunities.
Viola, Bianca, Luna, Giada, and Aurora have just started to discover their career paths in vibrant Milan. These five women don’t have a lot in common until the men in their lives decide to chase their dream jobs in the United States.
Weighing their sentiments more than their aspirations—because there are million perfect jobs, but only one perfect husband—the women leave their lives behind to undertake the Californian adventure.
Unemployed and lonely in a new country, the followives confront endless challenges. Impostor Syndrome, hectic jobs or no jobs at all, sky-high rents and home sickness are just a few of the troubles through which these women’s stories intersect.
The heroines will question everything, including the authenticity of their love, which they have traded for their lives in Italy.
Followives explores different aspects of the immigration flow of mostly male engineers from Italy to California in the 2010s.
The often-unspoken voices of their wives provide a unique point of view that demystifies the contemporary California Gold Rush.
At first, it may seem only a romance novel, but Followives invites the reader to reflect on some critical themes of our society:
Love and career: are we willing to take a step back in our careers in favor of our partners’ careers? Do women do that more often than men?
Living far from your country: can the advantages of living in a foreign country alleviate the nostalgia for your homeland?
Whether you are from Italy, California or any other country, if you enjoy reading about complex relationships, deep psychological characterization and vivid descriptions, Followives is your next book.
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Summary: A riveting story of dislocation, survival, and the power of the imagination to save us
Clemantine Wamariya was six years old when her mother and father began to speak in whispers, when neighbors began to disappear, and when she heard the loud, ugly sounds her brother said were “thunder.” It was 1994, and in 100 days more than 800,000 people would be murdered in Rwanda and millions more displaced. Clemantine and her fifteen-year-old sister, Claire, ran and spent the next six years wandering through seven African countries searching for safety–hiding under beds, foraging for food, surviving and fleeing refugee camps, finding unexpected kindness, witnessing unimaginable cruelty. They did not know whether their parents were alive. Continue reading “The Girl Who Smiled Beads: A Story of War and What Comes After”
Author: Lois Sepahban
Summary: A ten-year-old Manami did not realize how peaceful her family’s life on Bainbridge Island was until the day it all changed. It’s 1942, after the attack on Pearl Harbor, and Manami and her family are Japanese American, which means that the government says they must leave their home by the sea and join other Japanese Americans at a prison camp in the desert.
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Author: Julia Alvarez
Summary: Uprooted from their family home in the Dominican Republic, the four Garcia sisters – Carla, Sandra, Yolanda, and Sofia – arrive in New York City in 1960 to find a life far different from the genteel existence of maids, manicures, and extended family they left behind.
Continue reading “How the García Girls Lost Their Accents”