What’s a Black Critic To Do 11 – by Donna Bailey Nurse – Insomniac Press – 237 pages – $19.95. Available on Amazon.com at a reduced rate.
Respected Canadian literary critic Donna Bailey Nurse published “What’s a Black Critic To Do” eight years ago. That book includes a collection of her articles, interviews and book reviews – most of them dealing with issues of race, multiculturalism and Black literature. She has now completed the second edition with profiles and reviews of the work of Black writers from around the world including: Lawrence Hill, Toni Morrison, Ese Edugyan and many others. Her two books comprise an impressive anthology of Black Canadian and International writers. Donna Bailey Nurse lives in Toronto and is a frequent contributor to The Globe and Mail, National Post, the Toronto Star and the Montreal Gazette. Her articles have also appeared in Macleans, Publishers Weekly, the Washington Post and the Boston Globe.
Mighty Be Our Powers: How Sisterhood, Prayer, and Sex Changed A Nation At War – by Leymah Gbowee – Beast Books – 246 pages – $25.99.
As a young woman growing up in Monrovia in war-torn Liberia, Gbowee witnessed unspeakable violence, was deprived of her education and knew the ravages of death of many relatives and friends. As she got older her consuming bitterness changed to rage and she decided to try to change things. She founded the Liberian Mass Action for Peace in 2003, a coalition of Christian and Muslim women who publicly protested for peace, initiated a sex strike and helped end the civil war which resulted in the ouster of Charles Taylor and the election of Ellen Johnson Sirleaf., Africa’s first female president. Gbowee is a single mother of six including an adopted daughter and this year she and President Sirleaf were named together along with Tawakkul Karman of Yemen to share the 2011 Nobel Peace Prize.
Ese Edugyan’s second novel Half-Blood Blues, won the 2011 Scotiabank Giller Prize and the $50,000 that accompanies it. The Award was presented at a gala ceremony at the Four Seasons Hotel in Toronto on November 8th. She was the runner-up for the Governor-General’s Award (announced November 15th) and received $1,000 and was just named to Amazon.ca’s list of the 10 top books for 2011 coming in 5th.