Wednesday, April 22, 2015

Bocas Lit Fest: Land of Love and Drowning by Tiphanie Yanique


Four books down, and one more to go before The Bocas Lit Fest....

Oftentimes when I write a review of a novel, I will put the cover of the book at the beginning of the post so that when a person is in a book store, she may remember the book cover, remember my review, and decide if she should give the book a try. However, with this book, I put the picture of Tiphanie at the beginning of this post, because Tiphanie is a truly, gifted storyteller who should be recognized all over the world.


This book is set in the Virgin Islands. I've never been to the Virgin Islands, but after reading this book, I am adding the Virgin Islands to my list of places that I should visit soon. 

The main characters are Eeona and Anette. However, there are many minor characters that Tiphanie carefully developed as much as she did the main characters, and their development added to the richness of this text.

This stories traces the history of the Virgin Islands and the lives of the sisters Eeona and Anette. I absolutely loved this story, and here are a few reasons why:
  • Character Development: Tiphanie helped me to get to know these characters by telling their stories completely but not in a manner that was confusing. We get to know the characters quite well and you can't help but to love them, even those who aren't likeable, when we understand why they do what they do. 
  • Narration:  Tiphanie uses four different narrators to tell this story: Eeona, Anette, Jacob, and a third person narrator. For each character who spoke, Tiphanie helped us to really hear their voice and understand their perspective. With Anette, she even used a Caribbean dialect that was quite fascinating. However, the narrator who tells most of this story is the third person narrator, and it felt like she was sitting in my house telling me this captivating story: the narrator would actually address the reader and include me in the story by using words such as 'we.' 
By the way, Tiphanie's narration reminds me of the writings of the late and great J. California Cooper. If you have not tried anything by J. California, You Must! A good story to start with by J. California Cooper is In Search of Satisfaction. I can guarantee that you will thoroughly enjoy it, or I refund you the money that you spend on the book. (Just Playing!)

  
  • Atmosphere or Mood:  An author normally uses atmosphere or mood in order to affect the reader emotionally and psychologically and to provide a feeling for the narrative. And, Tiphanie did a superb job of doing just that. I could clearly envision every scene, and it felt like I was in the book. I was connected to this novel, and found myself pulled to the Virgin Islands over and over again: the characters, the place, the mysticism! Speaking of mysticism, the mysticism was used in this novel in a manner that made me believe that there is something to it. The supernatural was subtle but very present. As a matter of fact, I currently teach a study from St. Croix who stated that most people in the Virgin Islands do believe in the Supernatural, and he stated that almost every person has had at least one experience with the supernatural. Interesting right?
I've listed the three reasons why I absolutely loved this book; however, I could go and on and on about this book and its writer.

I believe that Tiphanie and her storytelling will definitely stand the test of time. I hope that Tiphanie writes, and writes, and writes and not die with one ounce of her talent still inside of her....

I got my fingers crossed for Tiphanie to still be in the lineup for The Bocas Lit Fest; It would be a great treat to meet her.

Get to know Tiphanie and her writings!

My last book to finish before The Bocas Lit Fest is A Brief History of Seven Killings:

 
So, I downloaded this book, and it is over six-hundred pages, and I thought, "What have I gotten myself into?" So, I read the reviews, and this book is highly acclaimed, and I can't wait to read every single word...

By the way, I just love this picture of Marlon James, the author of A Brief History of Seven Killings:

Marlon Jones

Purposeful reading feels good......

Happy Hump Day, My People!












3 comments:

Shannon @ Reading Has Purpose said...

I am soooo in love with Tiphqnie Yanique's writing. I had no idea what a treat I was in for with How to Escape From a Leper Colony. I didn't read this review of her novel because I don't want ANY spoilers! I want to soak up the entire thing from cover to cover, naive to what's hidden between the upcoming pages. I'm really struggling to go ahead with the other authors I selected instead of just diving right into Land of Love and Drowning. I plan to have a front row seat at her sessions!

Jacqueline said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Jacqueline said...

I try to never write plot summaries, rather my experiences with the novels....You may read this post; there are no spoilers. I promise!!

Tiphanie is the truth!

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