Five book wrap up 3

Here follows the wrap-up of the last five books I read. I don’t know why I write this way. Anyway, here we go.

The Thing Around Your Neck by Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie
This is Adichie’s short story collection from 2009. It was really, just so great. The stories are all set in either Nigeria, or with a Nigerian expat, or a Nigerian person who has travelled somewhere. It’s very much about identity and about cultural and regional identity. It’s also about how it is just to be Nigerian either in Nigeria or outside Nigeria. And it looks at the different ties you have to your family and your country. The stories are beautiful, and they’re very different. It’s very interesting to see the different ways people express their identity, and how they use their cultural identity to express themselves. Adichie is a very talented writer, and she’s beautiful and clever, and her writing is just so amazing.

The Green Helmet and Other Poems by W.B. Yates
This is a very short poetry collection by W.B. Yates. I think it was like 38 pages. The poems were mainly very normal traditional poems, and they were beautiful. The last poem was the Green Helmet, and it’s a beautiful epic poem about warring brothers, and creepy dudes with helmets. It was beautiful, and weird, and wonderful.

Escaping the Delta by Elijah Wald
I’ve had this books for like ever. By forever I mean four years. Anyway. I picked it up because I was doing the underhyped readathon and this book had like fewer than 100 ratings on goodreads. This is a look at how blues started, and a lot of the myths around blues. It’s also a look at the myth of Robert Johnson, who is often seen as this pinnacle of blues, and maybe that isn’t too accurate. It was really interesting. Blues is so steeped in myth and nostalgia. The idea is that blues was music of suffering and it was very connected to the music of slaves, and then the music of oppression. And while a lot of blues music is about sad things it’s because it was popular music, and popular music is often about common themes, and things that people think about. It was essentially pop music, it was enjoyed by black and white fans. It was especially popular among women. Quite often because the singers were sharp-dressed, handsome men. A lot of the early blues singers were absolutely badass dames, called blues queens, which I thought was cool. It was really interesting, and I love blues music, so I read this while listening to some excellent blues. Which was fun.

The Princess and the Fool by Paul Neafcy
This is a standalone fantasy adventure story written by a YouTuber named Paul Neafcy. I should say, he didn’t get a book deal through YouTube. He’s a writer who has a YouTube channel. The story is about a young woman named Katherine who is the Princess. She lives in Elderhaime and she has just turned 18 and is engaged to a man she’s never met, the King of the neighboring country. They’ve been at war for a long time. The idea is that if they marry there will be peace again. On her way to the wedding their carriage is attacked and Katherine’s father is killed. Her Fool/Bodyguard promises to get her home, or get her to the King, to help get her married, whatever she prefers. It’s fun, it’s exciting, there’s running around. The language feels really natural. It’s told through different perspectives and the voices feel very distinct. It was funny, and a nice romp. The Fool was incredible, and I wanted to hang out with him. He’s a badass.

Is It Just Me? By Miranda Hart

Miranda Hart is a comedienne from the UK. I have never used the word comedienne before and I don’t know if I will again. She has her own sit-com, called Miranda, and she was in Call the Midwife, which I haven’t seen, but it’s meant to be great. Anyways. This is Miranda’s memoir. She wrote it when she was 38, and she sort of looks back on her life, her dreams and ideas from when she was 18. She also asks the question “Is it just me?” in relation to odd things she does. Like: Is it just me, or does everyone hate weddings? And a lot of them are really weird, and silly, and I might be weird and silly, because many of them were so relatable for me. I feel like Miranda Hart and I would be great friends, ambling around being weird. I listened to the audiobook, and it’s read by Miranda Hart. It’s also written in a way that her 18-year-old self comes running in and interrupting when she realizes that “Big Miranda” isn’t living the life that “Little Miranda” was imagining. So Miranda is 6 foot 1, and is quite often mistaken for a man. She’s posh, and went to a posh boarding school, where students were apparently called Biffo (although I think he went to the boy’s school). And Little Miranda says things like “Marveloso” and “Hidiola” and I love it so much. It was funny, and poignant, and Miranda Hart is so enthusiastic, and doesn’t take herself seriously, and I just love her so much.