Wednesday, December 30, 2015
The Book of Night Women by Marlon James
Last book post of 2015......
As I was looking at the lineup for the BOCAS lit festival in Trinidad, I ran across an image of Marlon James, and I was intrigued by the picture below:
In this image, Marlon looks like a serious brother who has a lot on his mind, and I just had to give his writings a chance, and so I read A Brief History of Seven Killings. In this novel he tells a fictional account of the killing of Bob Marley, and I was completely captivated by his ability to have so many characters and each character’s voice is clear, unique, and clearly developed.
Recently, a friend sent me a text about The Book of Night Women, and she thought that I had recommended it to her. However, upon reading this completely, fascinating novel, I am sure that I have NEVER read it before; there is no way that I could forget a book like this.
In The Book of Night Women, Marlon tells the story of enslaved Africans who were brought to Jamaica. The novel has a mystery element with the main character, Lilith, having a ‘dark side.’ There are a group of women who are planning a slave revolt, and the women want Lilith to be apart of their plan. However, because of the complexity of Lilith’s situation, she poses a few problems.
The cleverness of Marlon’s writing in this novel is that he is able pull the reader in and really make the reader think about love between a slave and a master, and can there ever be love present between two people when one owns the other one?... Well, the answer was pretty obvious to me until I read this book.
What I loved the most about this book is the portrayal of the women, and Marlon’s ability to create suspense....
The women are shown as being strong and in control of their destinies even while being enslaved; I was pulling for them and was on edge as they planned and implemented their revolt. This novel is totally unpredictable, and I could not even imagine what would happen next; it was suspenseful all the way until the very last page.
This book is a clear indicator that Marlon is a seriously, thinking man and a gifted writer!
Marlon James is ‘The Man'....
Read this book!
Happy New Year.