- Buy a selected textbook and get free expedited shipping. Offered by Amazon AU. Here's how (terms and conditions apply)
Other Sellers on Amazon
+ $14.98 delivery
I've Been Meaning to Tell You: A Letter to My Daughter Hardcover – 5 Mar 2019
|New from||Used from|
Special offers and product promotions
Frequently bought together
Customers who bought this item also bought
"This is a beautiful meditation on what it means to be among a racial minority, and a blueprint honoring one's heritage" --Publishers Weekly
"Remarkable . . . Reminds us of the deep history and connectedness of all human life" - BookPage
"There is, as you pick it up, nothing to prepare you for its power, unless you already know Chariandy's fiction. He writes slender books that go straight to the heart. His most recent novel, Brother, was about a boy shot by a policeman and the aftermath for his family. It was piercingly moving. But this new book is devastating in a new way because it is nonfiction--and personal" - The Observer
"David Chariandy's letter to his daughter is in turns disquieting, heartfelt, unflinchingly tender, wry; writ large with love throughout. It is, quite simply, one of the most beautiful books I have ever read." --Aminatta Forna, author of HAPPINESS
"Chariandy's stunning book is a precise puncturing of the post-racial bubble, as well as an incredibly personal and powerful letter. I wish I could have read this when I was growing up."" --Nafkote Tamirat, author of THE PARKING LOT ATTENDANT
"I've Been Meaning to Tell You builds upon foundational discussions of race and gender, layering in intersections of class and citizenship with a flawless hand. Chariandy is smart, tender, and often funny as he weaves together narrative and analysis to navigate perhaps the most complex relationship of all: that of father and daughter."" --Sara Novic, author of GIRL AT WAR
"A brilliant, powerful elegy . . . pulsing with rhythm, and beating with life." --Marlon James, Man Booker Prize-winning author of A BRIEF HISTORY OF SEVEN KILLINGS, on BROTHER
"Brother is a surprising, and really shocking novel, unafraid of exploring the overlaps in love, loss, sexuality, race, place, terror and class. It is bold. It is brilliant. It marks the beginning of an absolutely mammoth literary talent." --Kiese Laymon, author of LONG DIVISION and HEAVY
"A breathtaking achievement . . . A compulsive, brutal and flawless novel that is full of accomplished storytelling with not a word spare." --Afia Akbar, Observer on BROTHER
"An exquisite novel, crafted by a writer as talented and precise as Junot Díaz and Dinaw Mengestu. It has a beating heart and a sharp tongue. It is elegant, vital, indubitably dope-the most moving book I've read in a year." --Dina Nayeri, The Guardian on BROTHER
"Riveting, composed, charged with feeling, Brother surrounds us with music and aspiration, fidelity and beauty." --Madeleine Thien, Man Booker Prize-shortlisted author of DO NOT SAY WE HAVE NOTHING on BROTHER
"Mesmerizing. Poetic. Achingly soulful. Brother is a pitch-perfect song of masculinity and tenderness, and of the ties of family and community." --Lawrence Hill, author of THE BOOK OF NEGROES, on BROTHER
"Crackles with electric energy . . . An important, vital and groundbreaking book. You really need to read it. It's that good." --Medium on BROTHER
"Chariandy's often elegiac tone and stately but spare prose establish a compelling melancholic mood. [This] revisitation of familiar territory pays off with its singular observations and insights. A novel with sentences to savour, Brother also rewards an unhurried reader with a poetic vision that while sad is also lovely." --The Toronto Star on BROTHER
"What can fiction do for us at a time when we are looking to understand other people's truths? As it turns out in this book, everything . . . This book is a high-wire act--a taut, highly visual, time-stopping story . . . filled with moments of swagger and bravery, of recklessness and love that sparks against the dull pain of tragedy . . . With Brother, Chariandy has written a book worth reading through an entire library to find." --Hannah Sung, The Globe and Mail on BROTHER
"Brother diffracts the spare light toward feeling again, after tragedy. Chariandy deftly assembles that which has come apart in the life of a Black family; their privacies assaulted, their desires unmet. Such a timbrous novel. Such a tender work." --Dionne Brand, author of WHAT WE ALL LONG FOR on BROTHER
About the Author
No customer reviews
|5 star (0%)||0%|
|4 star (0%)||0%|
|3 star (0%)||0%|
|2 star (0%)||0%|
|1 star (0%)||0%|
Review this product
Most helpful customer reviews on Amazon.com
In the remaining essays, Chariandy, still disheartened ten years later by the state of race relations, delves into history -- world history itself; and the history of his African and South Asian ancestors; and his own experience, including the family he has created with his European-ancestry wife.
“The future I yearn for is not one in which we will all be clothed in sameness, but one in which we will finally learn to both read and respectfully discuss our differences.”
My parents wrote a history of their lives and our family, and I treasure it, as I’m sure Chariandy’s daughter will treasure hers. Yet Chariandy's has relevance beyond his family, and I'm grateful he opened it for me and the world to treasure and learn from, too.
In I’ve Been Meaning to Tell You, he intimately and lovingly addresses his 13-year-old daughter, providing her with insights, guidance, and pivotal moments of her back history as she navigates her Canadian life as an “outsider.”
He writes, “I can glimpse through the lens of my own experience, how a parent or grandparent, encouraged to remain silent and feel ashamed of themselves, may nevertheless find the strength to voice directly to a child a truer story of ancestry, and, in the closeness of voice and breath and chosen language, pass on a legacy of sorrow and power of luminous specificity that honours the past and reveals to the listener a liveable future.”
That is indeed what he does here. The son of Black and South Asian migrants from Trinidad, David Chariandy marries a woman of European ancestry and his daughter reaches her preteen years in a French-immersion school. She belongs, not to one “group” or another; rather, she belongs to herself. But she still must understand systemic racism and ethnic/gender labeling to move comfortably on.
It’s an affirmational story, but far and away the best reason to read this slim book is the love and acceptance that David Chariandy communicates to his daughter. His pride in her and concern for her shine forth on every page and the universality of parent love ties him in with every caring parent, regardless of ethnicity. I closed the pages thinking how very fortunate this young teenager is to have such a father. And I reflected on how this epistolary book will become a keepsake at times when she’s lost – as all of us are at some point in life. It’s a true celebration of father-daughter love.
This book was reflective and thought-provoking and while I tend to gravitate toward this subject matter, I had difficulty staying engaged with the stories. I think it worth a read and is well-written, I just didn't find the spark in this book that made me want to keep reading despite it being a fairly succinct novella. Readers will likely find the book will incites introspection about their own family relationships with children, parents, and their place within the world.
It's a profound little book in which I think any parent will recognize some of the truths of, and hopefully see the lessons for our time, as we recognize the indecencies of the past.
If my review was helpful, please click the button below.