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By Bernardine Evaristo

What if the background of the transatlantic slave exchange were reversed and Africans had enslaved Europeans? How might that experience replaced the ways in which humans justified their inhuman habit? How wouldn't it tell our cultural attitudes and the insidious racism that also lingers at the present time? We see this tragicomic international grew to become the other way up during the eyes of Doris, an Englishwoman enslaved and brought to the hot international, movingly recounting reports of super difficulty and the goals of the folks she has left at the back of, all whereas visiting towards an get away into freedom.

A poignant and dramatic tale grounded in provocative rules, Blonde Roots is a really unique, profoundly innovative novel.

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I come close to laughing—or, I think about what I would look like laughing at him, for I would never have the courage to laugh openly in front of my father. Still, a wave of sadness rushes through me. I am smart enough to realize that this laughter, this perception of his ridiculousness, must be exactly what my father feels every time he looks at me and gives me That Stare—the one that makes me think, immediately, I am wrong. There is something wrong with me. Just thinking of That Stare makes anything magical that has happened to me in these past several minutes vanish, and the wound from the playground seems to throb again.

The bounty is easily visible under the desk, but it could be mistaken for a stack of comic books or baseball card catalogs. When we get to Cody’s room— me batting away the spaghetti western–style cigarette smoke around us—Cody closes the door, his back extra-hunched with secrecy. He tiptoes over to the stack, his stance becoming more of a wobble, for obvious genital-augmenting reasons. He slides the entire stack out. Not a speck of dust covers the top of it, which makes me immediately aware of just how often Cody looks at smut.

A wave of guilt flows through me as I begin to space out again, and in that moment I feel even more Catholic than an altar boy. Soon it is time for aarti, which marks the end of temple. Everyone stands up, eager to sing “Om Jai Jagdish Hare”—that is, to stretch their legs. It is time for us all to walk to the altar, take one of the small gold trays that bear candles, and move it in a circle a few times before dropping a dollar bill onto the tray in a dual offering—one to lotus-borne Lakshmi, the goddess of prosperity and wealth, the other to the bevy of plump women who cook the after-temple prasad, an assortment of marzipan treats, sweet rice, and oil-glistening puri.

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