Slaying the dragon of mono-culture in publishing

Research for ‘Writing the Future: Black and Asian Writers and Publishers in the UK Market Place’ found that more 84% of publishers and 97% of agents think that publishing is only “a little diverse” or “not diverse at all”.

We could have told you that for free.

Nikesh Shukla, writer and editor of Rife Magazine, has put together a solid list of some BAME writers for you to get to know and fall in love with. We approve.

1. Bad Feminist by Roxane Gay (Corsair)
This incredibly accessible collection of essays about everything from race to feminism to Channing Tatum and Scrabble is funny, informative and so compulsively readable.

2. Things Fall Apart by Chinua Achebe (Penguin Classics)
This coming-of-age tale is an intelligent and timeless story of the struggle between traditional values and colonialism.

3. The Unexpected Inheritance of Inspector Chopra by Vaseem Khan (Mulholland Books)
This noirish thriller is charming and mysterious and navigates Mumbai with twists and turns.

4. The Curious Tale of the Lady Caraboo by Catherine Johnson (Corgi Children’s)
Based on a true story, this historical thriller is for a YA audience and looks at mistaken identity.

5. The Buddha Of Suburbia by Hanif Kureishi (Faber & Faber)
This book changed my life. It’s why I do what I do. It’s an important statement of growing up as ‘other’ in the UK.

6. Ours are the Streets by Sunjeev Sahota (Picador)
Topical and challenging, this is an intelligent look at radicalisation in the UK.

7. This Divided Island: Stories From The Sri Lankan War by Samanth Subramaniam (Atlantic Books)
A challenging set of oral histories about the Sri Lankan war, tracing backwards from the death of the leader of the Tamil Tigers.

8. Black Mamba Boy by Nadifa Mohamed (HarperCollins)
A semi-biographical look at the author’s father’s life in Yemen in the 1930s and 1940s.

9. Terror Kid by Benjamin Zephaniah (Hot Key Books)
A thrilling and human look at a Romany kid’s emersion into the hacktivism scene.

Read his full article here.


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