I’m delighted to be joined by author of Good Girl Bad Girl Ann Girdharry today. Ann has started a regular feature in the Huffington Post in which she reviews a book by a new author of colour. One of my favourite books is White Teeth by Zadie Smith, but I have to admit that I have not read many books by authors of colour, mainly because they just don’t seem to be out there, and yet they must be! Ann is highlighting and spotlighting some of these authors in her new feature and I will hand over to Ann to tell you more about this…
Discover Ten New Authors of Colour
Hi Abbie and thanks so much for supporting this series. Why did I decide to dig around to find Ten New Authors of Colour? Well, here are a few of my reasons –
1.I’m an avid reader
Yes, I’m foremost a writer, but I’m also an avid reader and beta reader. I’ve spent many years critiquing work for other authors and, in that time, I’ve come across some fantastic talent – from, as yet, unpublished authors. I’ve read wonderful prose and brilliant story ideas that would blow your socks off.
Quite a lot of these stories don’t get onto our bookshelves. Or, if they do, they’re not backed by the mega-bucks that go into promoting the big, ‘best sellers’, so people don’t get to know about them.
Writing this series is a way to push forward some books that I think are really good and bring them to the attention of readers.
2. Authors of colour are under represented on our book shelves
Go into any bookshop and the vast majority of titles on the shelves will be written by white authors and be full of white characters.
Now, one reader said to me ‘I don’t care about the colour of the author, I only care about good books’.
I understand that, but I think it’s grim there isn’t much more choice available.
Another reader told me she was shocked to realise she’d never read a book with a non-white main character (and that now she realised this, she’d like to).
It’s not always easy to find recommendations. I hope this series is a place to start.
3. Curiosity and tolerance
In my own reading, I like to discover new stories where the writer is coming from a different culture, or a different world view, or has experiences and history different to my own. This ‘flavour’ always comes across in the writing, even if the story isn’t explicitly about race or culture or identity.
It’s my personal belief that finding out about people who we see as ‘other’ is a great foundation for fostering tolerance. It expands our understanding and can make us quietly ask ourselves questions.
4. Where to get good recommendations?
There are some ‘recommended’ reading lists around for those readers wanting to find quality books by authors of colour. I looked at a good one produced by Book Riot (you can find it HERE.
The Book Riot list contains some great iconic writers of colour but out of the twenty recommendations, only five were published since 2010. One book dated from the 1950s and another from the 1960s. Now, I know there are good books way more recent than that…
Hence, this series!
I’ll to be featuring a mix of quality, traditionally published and independently published books – each with something unique to offer.
For each author, I’ll be including a book review and a snap-shot author interview.
You can catch #1 here – http://www.huffingtonpost.co.uk/ann-girdharry/discover-ten-new-authors-_b_12191630.html
and #2 here –http://anngirdharry.weebly.com/blog.
#3 is due end of November and I’ll give you a hint that she’s twice been nominated for a Goodreads Choice Award. Watch this space and Happy Reading!
Ann Girdharry website http://www.girdharry.com
Ann Girdharry blog http://anngirdharry.weebly.com/blog
Thank you Ann for the great post. Keep your eyes out for her feature on her blog and the Huffington Post.