Such a Fun Age by Kiley Reid
Rating – 5 out of 5
In Such a Fun Age, Alix Chamberlain, a successful feminist blogger, has always known the perfect way to ask for the things she wants in life. Asking has always opened doors for her and allowed her to build her brand. One day she sends her baby sitter, Emira Tucker, out late in the evening with her daughter Briar Chamberlain. Alix doesn’t think of the implications until it’s too late. Emira, a black woman, is stopped by some “concerned citizens” with the white Briar. This incident is filmed and causes ripples through the Chamberlain household. Alix wants to help Emira, even as part of her past creeps into the present. With Emira at the cusp of wanting to start her adult life and Alix pushing her help on her, the situation comes to a head.
“I think it best we went our separate ways, and that those paths never crossed again.” ― Kiley Reid, Such a Fun Age
Why I liked Such a Fun Age by Kiley Reid
All the hype about this book is true! Kiley Reid delivers a complex narrative about race, class and how they interact in a way that is relatable. I was blown away by the depth of her characters and her narrative storytelling. Emira is brilliantly self-aware in contrast to the many white characters in the novel. In contrast, Alix and Kelly, are not as aware of their place in the world, or their effect on others.
Reid has raised the bar for narratives about race in the modern context. The scenes she wrote between Emira and Alix and between Alix and Kelly highlighted many dynamics that are usually invisible. She got to the heart of how white people can be well-intentioned but still so so wrong about racism and its effects. Reid started a conversation in this book about how woke culture can lead to continued racism that society needs to have.
I listened to the story which is narrated by Nicole Lewis. Lewis made the characters come to life by affecting different accents and styles of speech. I recommend listening to this book since it was so well narrated. Either way, listening or reading, this book is my favorite book of the year (CALLING IT NOW!) for modern literature. At the very least, it will be the one to beat!
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