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Luster: A Novel de Raven Leilani
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Luster: A Novel (2020 original; edició 2020)

de Raven Leilani (Autor)

MembresRessenyesPopularitatValoració mitjanaMencions
5763131,696 (3.73)41
Membre:rdegrassi
Títol:Luster: A Novel
Autors:Raven Leilani (Autor)
Informació:Farrar, Straus and Giroux (2020), 240 pages
Col·leccions:La teva biblioteca
Valoració:****
Etiquetes:read2021

Detalls de l'obra

Luster de Raven Leilani (2020)

Afegit fa poc perRennie80, kittycatpurr, harlaquin64, ProfSharon, petit.small, eshaundo, biblioteca privada
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» Mira també 41 mencions

Es mostren 1-5 de 31 (següent | mostra-les totes)
I hated this book. In our time of coronavirus and hyper-partisan politics it came at me viciously using long sentences steeped in the cultural vernacular of a person fifty years younger than I, filled with references I didn’t understand, and the righteous anger of a young black woman struggling to find her place personally and professionally in a society that judges her based on her blackness and her gender and little else.
I loved this book. The driving force of Edie’s narration, her unique personality, viewpoint and language, slowly won me over, although it took time. By the last quarter of the book I was mesmerized by her inability to overcome her own choices while persevering as if she could. I was overcome with a sense of pre-ordained doom. I hoped for an epiphany. I savored every word, researched every confusing cultural reference. Because of the way Leilani builds this story and Edie’s character, the ending was satisfying for me, although I can’t tell you why.

Edie, the mid-twenties protagonist narrates in the first person, sometimes with a nearly stream-of-consciousness style that is immediate but difficult for me because it is steeped in the culture of her age group–forty-five years distant from mine. The challenges of Edie’s life, the way she lives it, and the cultural milieu she lives it in are not mine–she is an artist, I was an engineer; she is a passionate, young black woman, I am an older white man; I am privileged in many subtle ways, she is not. She is automatically suspect–by the police, by her employers, by the people she meets–I am automatically trusted.
Those differences are the theme, for me. Leilani had to bludgeon me with it and she almost knocked me out, but I withstood her blows and was given a small window into this life I will never know. I felt viscerally what it was like to be Edie, living with and acknowledging her faults and reveling in her fortitude and her insight.
I read a lot science fiction partly to feel the presence of the other and experience worlds I will never know. Raven Leilani, in Luster has given me the best of that in the familiar setting of my own world, but with a perspective alien to me–that of a young, black woman. ( )
  tbrown3131949 | Aug 20, 2021 |
Well written ( )
  envyensor | Aug 13, 2021 |
Every generation of 20-somethings thinks their situation is somehow unique. As they come to grips with being adults, how working can be a real drag, how it's harder for them. This book is the Gen Z version--Edie is among the oldest of Gen Z.

Edie lives in a crappy apartment, works a boring publishing job, and wants to paint. She makes bad decisions day in and day out--mostly involving 1) men, but also her involving her 2) career, her 3) art, her 4) friends. She loses her job due to 1 and 2, loses her apartment, and ends up in an unusual living situation. Her boyfriend is older and married and presents her with his wife's rules for their relationship. She breaks them.

As she looks for a new job via online postings, she struggles to find where she fits. As a black woman, she is often not taken seriously (but really--she is not serious about work) in the interview process. She gets to know a black tween who has been adopted by a white family, and Edie finally finds a bit of a purpose--to teach this girl about life as a black woman. About her hair, how to behave around cops, how to exist in the world. But Akila teaches Edie things too.

Maybe I would have liked this book a lot more if I were a current 20-something. I did love Edie's biting humor and sarcasm. She is witty and bright, smart and funny. ( )
  Dreesie | Jul 25, 2021 |
I often read novels to try and experience lives totally different from mine. I had seen many glowing reviews of this novel, including a piece in The New Yorker, and so in I went and am I pleased that I did. It’s funny that I read this right after “Jack” by Marilynne Robinson and that I’m posting these reviews on the same day because I was lax in writing my review of “Jack” because while on the surface the two books have NOTHING in common, in reality they share a lot at the core. Neither of them is working on a long term plan, they usually wake up and figure out how am I going to get through today. It is something very remote from my existence. Our protagonist Edie is a twenty-three year old African-American woman trying to find her way in the world. As with “Jack” there were times where I found myself judging Edie’s actions but then I realized how old I am compared to her when I figured out that her mother was born in 1960. She is so young to me and I laughed at the idea that “I find her LinkedIn, Twitter, and Instagram, and I am shocked that she is the same person on all three.” I can’t imagine the pressure on young people to create and curate these fake personas on social media. Once I dropped some of the judgement, I found myself empathizing with Edie as she dealt with the difficulties of making your way in New York City as a young person. The book is beautifully written and full of great observations like “I am good, but not good enough, which is worse than simply being bad” which really sums up that feeling of being in the huge middle that most of us live in. Her interactions are often horrifying, sometimes because of the casual racism and sexism that permeates our society and sometimes because Edie is frankly pretty messed up (mostly with good reason). Her voice is strong and compelling and it was wonderful to see her observe her white, male lover and notice “It is strange to see him noticing about himself what I always notice—the optimism, the presumption, this rarefied alternate reality in which there is nowhere he does not belong.” While there have been times in my life I have felt like I didn’t belong, it is nothing like what Edie deals with 24/7. The story moves through a lot of plot developments that really keep it moving but it is about Edie and her story. People behave badly and sometimes surprise you with an actual moment of human kindness. Edie starts to figure out who she is and I felt so much happier and optimistic about her by the end. I look forward to more novels by Raven Leilani. This is an incredible debut. ( )
  MarkMad | Jul 14, 2021 |
I was going to DNF but suddenly it was over. Not really interested in the main character or the story at all. ( )
  adnohr | Jun 27, 2021 |
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813.6 — Literature American and Canadian American fiction 21st Century

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Mitjana: (3.73)
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