My Thoughts On… A Change is Gonna Come
Contributors include Tanya Byrne, Inua Ellams, Catherine Johnson, Patrice Lawrence, Ayisha Malik, Irfan Master, Musa Okwonga and Nikesh Shukla.
Plus introducing four fresh new voices in YA fiction: Mary Bello, Aisha Bushby, Yasmin Rahman and Phoebe Roy.
The brilliance of an anthology of short stories and poems is that there is almost always going to be something for everyone and this is definitely the case with A Change is Gonna Come. Every story and poem in this book is unique and interesting and they all kept me returning to the book, itching to find out what story would be next.
A wonderful part about this book is the theme of change and how each of the authors have interpreted this differently and come up with some fascinating, moving and powerful stories. It’s only when reading anthologies like this that you can see just how important short stories can be. Sometimes a short story has a way to pack a punch faster than a novel can.
While I don’t want to pick favourites, I do have to admit that I loved some of the stories in this anthology more than others – and I think that is absolutely okay. I love how each of the stories were so unique and fascinating, some contemporary, some dystopian, some fantasy. It was a wonderful mix of genres that really brought the book together as a whole. So my top three stories were:
Marionette Girl by Aisha Bushby
Hackney Moon by Tanya Byrne
Fortune Favours the Bold by Yasmin Rahman
These were all very different (although oddly they are all contemporary!), the first about a girl with OCD who struggles with change (something I can highly relate to), the second a very cute romance between two girls, the third about how a young Muslim girl responds to media and societal hate after terrorist attacks. All three stories were incredibly powerful, entertaining and thought provoking. They filled me with many emotions throughout them and I had to take a small break after reading each of these stories.
Of course, the biggest draw of this book is that every single story has a character of colour as its protagonist. They all show the world how wonderful and human people of colour are and spotlight a little on how they live in this world. I cannot tell you how much empathy this book gave me – among many other books I have read – and I truly hope that this is the start of a change in the publishing world. Because as the book says, A Change is Gonna Come, whether they like it or not.