Ok, back on the great book catch up, only four more to go, then we can start chatting breeze again. AND I’m on my last assignment for college so I will soon be able to read for pleasure and hopefully I’ll have time to ‘make’ things again.
All in good time.
White Teeth, by Zadie Smith… I’m probably the only person on the planet who hadn’t read this when it first came out. The novel follows a set of characters, three very different families in London round the turn of the millennium.
Samad is an ‘Indian’ waiter from Bangladesh, his arranged wife sews bondage outfit on the kitchen table for a job. They have tweens, smart Magid was sent to Bangladesh not to forget his heritage but comes back more English than his handsome brother Millat left behind, lover of American music and involved with a Muslim religious group whose acronym is KEVIN, he is loved by the mixed race Irie, daughter of Archie, Samad’s friend in the army, who is married to Clara, toothless, Jamaican, ex Jehovah’s witness. There are also the Chalfens, Jewish, super educated, white ‘liberal’ middleclass, self-righteous…
It’s a very multicultural London, an incredible urban melting pot, and the characters are all trying to find themselves and a little place where they belong. You’ll come to love them all, even the ones you don’t like!
And it’s funny. (And a little gut wrenchingly sad too). BUT you have to remember that to really appreciate this book you must keep in mind that it was written BEFORE 9/11… if you don’t … it’ll sound wrong, flippant at times, and maybe too close to the bone at others… I don’t know, life was different pre September Eleven, more innocent and I don’t think Smith would have written it in this way only a couple of years later.
One of the best books I’ve ever read.
Slowly, read it slowly.