If I could take five books with me – forget ‘on a deserted island’ since we talking about favourite things here – at YS Falls, way down from the noisy water, in the sweet dappled pools of frangipani shade, they would be:
- Jane and Louisa Will Soon Come Home (1980) Erna Brodber
- Myal (1988) Erna Brodber
- Wide Sargasso Sea (1966) Jean Rhys
- Song of Solomon (1977) Toni Morrison, and
- Beloved (1987) Toni Morrison
These are my sacred texts, my genesis, my exodus, my revelations. They beckon viscera, ancient sorrow, longing, joy in the lyrical pulse of their prose. They testify and prophesy. They plug me into life. Exquisitely.
They also explain the massive chasm in my reading experience, one I’m trying to bridge by taking on the TIMES list.
Reading Beloved yet again reveals that while I have a restricted reading palate, it is a fine palate indeed, but I must resist this tender trap. I will not skip to Wide Sargasso Sea and forget the rest. I will not read Beloved more than twice this week. I will read the other books on the list.