#ArmchairBEA – Day 1 – Diversity

Design by Amber of Shelf Notes
Design by Amber of Shelf Notes

Disclosure time: I am a white European woman of a certain age and educational background. I’m sure this pre-disposes me to reading certain books – I can only read English, so that excludes me from reading books that are not written in, or translated into, English.

I don’t keep track, but I seem to be reading predominately female authors at the moment. I have no idea whether any authors are PoC or not (I choose a book because I want to read the book, not because of the colour of the author) but I suspect that most of them are white.

Whilst I’m not ageist, I usually don’t read YA books, not because I dont think they’ve got any value, but because I dread to come across a book that is patronising or simply too earnest. I’ve read Noughts and Crosses by Mallory Blackman and was very disappointed – not because there were black lead characters, but it was (to me) so forced….it seems as if she decided everything opposite whether it works or not!  Now I did read it as an adult, so not the target audience, and would it work for the YA market?  Another confession: I read Little Women for the first time as an adult, and got annoyed with that too (“he’s not going to ring!”) so it’s not like I have a thing against recently published books.

What I do read: books that have been translated into English from French (Winemaker Detective series) and Spanish (The Antiquarian), Chinese (e.g. Miss Chopsticks). I read books set in Asia, written by Westerners (e.g. Shanghai Girls); books set in India/written by Indians; written by Indians, written in English (A Suitable Boy); written by Indians, set in England (An Equal Music).

So I read the books that I want to read, no matter who (or what) the writer is. I’ve never not read a book simply because of the race or gender of the writer. I may well have a preconception about a book, based on the subject matter




One thought on “#ArmchairBEA – Day 1 – Diversity

  1. May I suggest the checking out the catalog from Pushkin Press? They publish foreign books translated into English. They also have a series of classic crime novels, which it sounds like you might enjoy. I’ve had a great deal of fun reading their offerings.


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.