It is safe to say that I have survived the calamity of 2020, lol. I am thrilled to have read many fantastic books by different authors during the pandemic lockdown, both unfamiliar and well-known. I have read a total of 13 books this year, but many have moved me and struck a chord with me. One of my 2021 goals is to read 25 books; there will be a post on this topic a little later!
1. The Meaning of Mariah Carey by Mariah Carey: I felt a whirlwind of emotions as I read it. I was saddened, inspired, afraid, and proud! Her story is a classic rags-to-riches story. I am proud of the woman Carey has become. She is the epitome of resilience, strength, and courage to share her story with the world openly; her writing skills are superb. Of course, I did not expect anything less! She came through and delivered a literary masterpiece! It began with her formative years rife with abject poverty, struggle, racism, and instability and ended with the present time. I feel like I now fully understand Mariah as an artist, singer, mother, and woman. Her music is timeless, uplifting, and inspirational! Also, I plan on listening to the audiobook version of her memoir. It should be a magnificent experience!
2. We are Not Here to Be Bystanders by Linda Sarsour: I thoroughly enjoyed reading Linda's story and admire her activism work on behalf of marginalized groups. I am inspired by her tenacity, determination, and compassion for others. I recommend this book to anyone who is into activism and grassroots work. It is poignant, inspiring, and timely!
3. Unbowed by Wangari Maathai: I learned many interesting facts about Maathai and valuable life lessons that I can apply in my life. She left an innumerable legacy in her motherland and beyond. She possessed grace, class, elegance, determination, and persistence in achieving equal human rights for everyone.
4. Prague Winter: A Personal Story of Remembrance and War, 1937-1948 by Madeline Albright: This book was interesting. It provided a comprehensive history of World War II and the Holocaust. I am interested in gaining additional knowledge of the Holocaust to ascertain some important implications for the divisive society that we all live in.
5. Kaffir Boy: An Autobiography: Mark Mathabane: I really enjoyed reading this book because it is incredibly riveting. Mathabane used lots of vivid, rich descriptive detail describing his childhood in South Africa that I literally felt like I was transported to the land. The book did a poignant job of utilizing the critical race theory(social work macro theory) to illustrate the different levels of oppression that he endured from whites and blacks based on his skin color. I strongly recommend that everyone reads this book; it will move you.
6. African Women: Three Generations: by Mark Mathabane: I really enjoyed reading this book by Mathabane. The stories of what his grandma, mom, and sister endured are unimaginable to me. South Africa and numerous countries all over the world are entrenched in sexism and patriarchy. These systems of oppression impede women's progress and autonomy. These perspectives had, in common, expected the different levels of abuse they endured at their respective partners' hands.