It’s Monday, and you know what that means. OK, there’s nothing set in stone about Mondays yet. At least not for this blog. But I do have something I think you’ll all enjoy. Today I have another “Authors We Love” post for you all.
Ever since I posted last week’s announcement, the response for this series has drastically increased. Last week I had the pleasure of sharing one of Jessica Fortunato’s favorite authors. Today, I’d like to give you a Monday Morning treat by sharing what Cinta García had to say about a certain author. for those of you who know her already, you might be surprised…it’s not Jane Austen she’s discussing today. That might come at a later time, though, so don’t be sad
I love books. I have always loved reading. I remember myself at age 5, sitting on a little chair in my grandma’s kitchen, reading while she was busy cooking. So, most of the times, whenever I open a book, I remember that time and the smells of my grandma’s delicious meals.
So I started loving books and authors at a very early age. My first book-love was The Wizard of Oz, since I learnt to read all by myself with that book. Very soon I discovered Jane Austen, and I fell in love with her style and books, and now she is my favourite author. But I won’t talk about Jane Austen in this post, don’t worry.
It was a bit later, while I was studying at University, when I fell in love with another author. I have a BA in English and Literature, so along the 5 years that you need to complete the studies, I had to study lots of different types of literature. I had to study British, Irish, Satiric, Feminist, Dystopian, Canadian, and African-American literature, among others.
I loved African-American Literature from the very beginning of the course, and the author who made me fall in love with this kind of literature was Toni Morrison. So, yes, Toni Morrison is an author that I love. Toni Morrison was an avid reader herself when she was a child (like me), and among her favourite authors were Jane Austen and Leo Tolstoy (like me!!). So it was pretty obvious that I was going to love her works.
Morrison’s books are very special, so it is no wonder that she has won many awards, being the Nobel Prize for Literature (1993) the most important of them. I have read most of her novels and I love them all. Toni Morrison’s books focus on black women and their struggles in life, but she uses a very personal and poetic tone that it is quite suitable for the genre she chose for her books: magic realism.
Her novels are poetic, magical, and sometimes they include a supernatural tone that makes the reader feel absolutely hooked to the story. My favourite novel by Toni Morrison is Beloved. This novel is very powerful, both in tone and in feelings. This book is a clear example of magic realism. It is based on a true story, the story of an African-American woman who escaped from slavery to flee to a free state. But she was found and tried to be forced to go back to her owner by a team of people in charge of looking for runaway slaves. In her desperation, she kills her baby daughter, whose ghost will eventually come to haunt her years later.
It is a beautiful book about mother-daughter relationships and about the psychological side effects of slavery. The very beginning of the book is enchanting and very powerful, commanding you to go on reading. It says a lot about what we can expect: “124 was spiteful. Full of a baby’s venom.” By using flashbacks and other literary devices, Toni Morrison makes the reader feel and relive all the horrors that Sethe, the main protagonist, had to endure to lead her to commit such a horrible crime as it was killing her own daughter. We also see the story from another daughter’s point of view,Denver, whose actions are influenced by her terrible fear that her mother can get crazy again and kill her too.
All the voices in this novel are poetic and powerful, but the strongest voice is the one of Beloved, the baby ghost; Toni Morrison makes her voice easily recognisable by avoiding all use of punctuation in her speeches: “I am not dead I sit the sun closes my eyes when I open them I see the face I lost Sethe’s is the face that left me Sethe sees me see her and I see the smile her smiling face is the place for me it is the face I lost she is my face smiling at me doing it at last a hot thing now we can join” (chapter 22).
So I love Toni Morrison because, by reading her novels, I can feel the same things that her characters feel. The musical and poetic tone makes her prose flow so easily that you cannot stop reading till the book is finished. She mastered the use of imagery to make you see certain things along the books. And even after closing the book, you spend some time overwhelmed by the emotions conveyed by Toni Morrison’s lovely stories. She is a great storyteller and she is an author not to be missed. I strongly recommend everybody to read Beloved, for which she won the Pulitzer Prize (1988), and The Bluest Eye, her first novel, which tells the story of a black girl who longs to have blue eyes.
Lovers of poetry and imagery have to love her novels. I am a big fan of magic realism, so I was very happy when I discovered Toni Morrison. Sometimes, I open my copy of Beloved and I am amazed how it makes me feel like the very first time I opened the book and I read that enchanting beginning.
Thanks, Rob, for posting my ramblings on one of my favourite authors. Keep up with the good work. I am a big fan of your blog.
Here’s a little bit about Cinta García. She’s one to always have a smile on her face. This often translates into those around her smiling as well. If you don’t believe me, go follow her on Twitter and try not to feel good about the day…no matter what’s bringing you down. Aside from the ever-present smile, Cinta is an avid reader. She is always sharing new books and there’s a big variety of titles as well. When she’s not reading Cinta is writing. She is currently working on a collection of children’s stories about her lovable little creation, Little Nani. I’m eagerly awaiting the completion of her collection of Little Nani’s adventures. One last thing you MUST know. If you keep up with her tweets…you might get VERY hungry. Cinta is always cooking or talking about food and posting pictures of delicious looking meals.
I hope you enjoyed reading about Toni Morrison and why Cinta loves her work. I’m pleased with how this series is starting to take off and the feedback is incredible. I hope you keep up with future posts, and as always if you (any of you out there, new followers and old, writers and non-writers) would like to have your own guest post in this series, feel free to email me (find my email on the About page).