Essays & Criticism

Book Review: Oonya Kempadoo’s ALL DECENT ANIMALS

20130520-215820.jpgChristopher’s book review appears in New Orleans Review of ALL DECENT ANIMALS from author Oonya Kempadoo. This is her third novel and is published by Farrar, Straus and Giroux.

Here is the opening of the review of Oonya Kempadoo’s ALL DECENT ANIMALS:

During Carnival in Port of Spain, with loud Mama look a boo-boo tin pan, rum in everyone, close friends throw answers back and forth to the question: Where does the name “calypso” come from? They discuss its Caribbean, French, Spanish/Venezuelan, and West African origins. There is no easy answer. It is shaped out of cultural congress, it has come together from across diverse sounds and styles into an artistic interpretation that here resonates profoundly with the human experience of these Trinidadians. In this scene from Oonya Kempadoo’s third novel, All Decent Animals, the friends could just as well be talking about the very story world in which they exist because a similar pattern of coming together underpins this book, a weaving of peoples, cultures, and old and new worlds.

Click here to read the full review at New Orleans Review.

More About Oonya Kempadoo

Kempadoo’s first novel, Buxton Spice, was published 1998. The New York Times described it as “superb, and superbly written”. Both of her first books were nominated for International IMPAC Dublin Literary Awards. She was named a Great Talent for the Twenty-First Century by the Orange Prize judges and is a winner of the Casa de las Américas Prize.

More About New Orleans Review

New Orleans Review is a journal of contemporary literature and culture, publishing new poetry, fiction, nonfiction, art, photography, film and book reviews. The journal was founded in 1968 and has since published an eclectic variety of work by established and emerging writers, including Walker Percy, Pablo Neruda, Ellen Gilchrist, Nelson Algren, Hunter S. Thompson, John Kennedy Toole, Richard Brautigan, Barry Spacks, James Sallis, Jack Gilbert, Paul Hoover, Tess Gallagher, Sherman Alexie, Rodney Jones, Annie Dillard, Everette Maddox, Julio Cortazar, Gordon Lish, Robert Walser, Mark Halliday, Robert Olen Butler, Michael Harper, Angela Ball, Joyce Carol Oates, Diane Wakoski, Dermot Bolger, Ernest J. Gaines, Roddy Doyle, William Kotzwinkle, Alain Robbe-Grillet, Arnost Lustig, Raymond Queneau, Yusef Komunyakaa, Michael Martone, Matthea Harvey, D. A. Powell, Rikki Ducornet, and Ed Skoog.

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