... three shiny books and I'm excited! I've been carefully conserving the bookstore gift certificates I got over the holidays -- yes, four months ago, and I still have a good chunk of them left, how's that for discipline? -- so last week I bit into one of them and ordered some books online. Three of them arrived today and I'm excited about each. Each comes highly recommended, and they couldn't be timelier, none of them.
187 Reasons Mexicanos Can't Cross the Border: Undocuments 1971-2007 by Juan Felipe Herrera. This is a collection of poetry, memoir, and unclassifiable work. Check this out, from the description from the back cover: " A sustained manifesto of resistance and affirmation, this hybrid collection of texts tells the story of what it's like to live outlaw and Brown in the United States." Hello, Arizona? I believe he's talking to you!
Palestine's Children: Returning to Haifa & Other Stories by Ghassan Kanafani. I've wanted to read Kanafani's work for some time. I've heard it's wonderful. Kanafani was a beloved leader of the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine who was assassinated in Beirut by the Mossad, the Israeli death-square secret police, in 1972. It's an exciting prospect to read fiction whose writer said, "Politics and the novel are an indivisible case." Yes! Can't wait to get to this.
Red Dirt: Growing Up Okie by Roxanne Dunbar-Ortiz. This is a memoir of growing up poor in Oklahoma "from the Dust Bowl days to the end of the Eisenhower era" by a radical left activist and historian. A comrade of mine read this and recommended it to me some years ago and I'm happy to finally have it in my hot little hands.