Friday, January 30, 2009

Notable Reviews for Evaristo's Novel of "Whyte Slavery"

Blonde Roots, Bernardine Evaristo's couter-historical novel about the slave trade in reverse is receiving superlatives in the American and British press.

Publisher's Weekly called it an "astonishing, uncomfortable and beautiful alternative history." The London Times called it, "astonishing... brilliant."

Former Cosmo editor Helen Gurley Brown addresses the novel's playful treatment of "body issues" in the London Telegraph: She's tall, slim, blonde and blue-eyed. So of course the heroine of Bernadine Evaristo's new novel has body issues. She could have her nose flattened, her skin darkened and get some kinky black hair woven on to her ugly blonde roots. But she's trying to respect her body the way it is: "Europane".

Writing in the Washington Post, Ron Charles said, "My only complaint about Bernardine Evaristo's alternate history of racial slavery is that it's 150 years late. Imagine the outrage this clever novel would have provoked alongside Harriet Beecher Stowe's incendiary story or Frederick Douglass's memoir! But now, amid the warm glow of 21st-century liberalism, with our brilliant black president, what could we possibly learn from a new satire of slavery?... Plenty."
Evaristo will visit the Writers Institute on Thursday, February 5, 2009.