Mini ARC reviews: That Can Be Arranged + How We Fight white Supremacy

Today I offer you two mini reviews that I feel are too short to share on their own. Two different genres and formats but I think they have something in common — being written by POC and talking about experiences that aren’t usually talked about in media.

mini reviews

I was sent this book as an advance copy by the publisher via NetGalley for reviewing purposes, but all opinions are my own.

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Summary: Chaperones, suitors, and arranged marriages aren’t only reserved for the heroines of a Jane Austen novel. They’re just another walk in the park for this leading lady, who is on a mission to find her leading lad. From the brilliant comics Yes, I’m Hot in This, Huda Fahmy tells the hilarious story of how she met and married her husband. Navigating mismatched suitors, gossiping aunties, and societal expectations for Muslim women, That Can Be Arranged deftly and hilariously reveals to readers what it can be like to find a husband as an observant Muslim woman in the twenty-first century.

So relevant in today’s evolving cultural climate, Fahmy’s story offers a perceptive and personal glimpse into the sometimes sticky but ultimately rewarding balance of independent choice and tradition.

Release date: March, 10th

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★★★★✩

I had such a fun time reading this! It’s a very quick read but it made me laugh out loud a few times (I was drinking tea at the moment and I narrowly avoided one or two cartoon-style spit-your-tea-laughing moments) and it was also a fun way to open my eyes to a world I didn’t know much about, the world of Muslim dating courtship and general pre-marriage shenanigans.

I didn’t know Huda before but I think she did a wonderful job at opening up about her life in a humorous and honest way, and regardless of whether you come from a similar background or from a completely different one, it’s very easy to relate to her. I was so happy for her when she understood her worth and didn’t settle for something that would’ve made her unhappy, and when she found her husband.

I really recommend this if you’re interested in the topic and I encourage you to go read reviews by Muslim reviewers rather than mine.

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I was sent this book as an advance listening copy via libro.fm for reviewing purposes, but all opinions are my own.

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Summary: This celebration of Black resistance, from protests to art to sermons to joy, offers a blueprint for the fight for freedom and justice-and ideas for how each of us can contribute

Many of us are facing unprecedented attacks on our democracy, our privacy, and our hard-won civil rights. If you’re Black in the US, this is not new. As Colorlines editors Akiba Solomon and Kenrya Rankin show, Black Americans subvert and resist life-threatening forces as a matter of course. In these pages, leading organizers, artists, journalists, comedians, athletes, and filmmakers offer wisdom on how they fight White supremacy. It’s a must-read for anyone new to resistance work, and for the next generation of leaders building a better future.

Featuring contributions from:

Ta-Nehisi Coates
Tarana Burke
Harry Belafonte
adrienne maree brown
Alicia Garza
Patrisse Khan-Cullors
Reverend Dr. Valerie Bridgeman
Kiese Laymon
Jamilah Lemieux
Robin DG Kelley
Damon Young
Michael Arceneaux

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★★★★✩

I want to start this with the premise that I am white and I am an European who’s always lived in Europe. What I know about racial dynamics in the US comes from books like The Hate U Give, the news and social media. But I had never read a non-fiction book specifically about this specific topic so I was very interested when this book was in the January ALCs by libro.fm.

I found this book very well done. It’s a collection of not only essays but also interviews, poems, songs and reflections by Black people of different backgrounds, and they are collected into different sections. As a reviewer it would be impossible to rate each individual contribution, especially only owning an audiobook copy where I couldn’t take notes or bookmark things. And to be honest I feel like, with a book like this, to talk about each essay would be to miss the point entirely.

This is an important book because it makes it clear from the start that, while certainly being perfectly readable and enjoyable to someone who, like me, is white and doesn’t live in the US, is primarily targeted at Black people. There were some essays where I lacked some or all context to fully be able to understand, but that’s okay. If you’re white, no matter if you live in the US or not, do yourself a favor and don’t expect this to be written for you. Sit back, listen or read and learn, because there’s so, so much to learn from this book. And then give this book to your Black friends, to your white friends who are willing to listen to Black voices without “…but!” and without wanting to throw in their two cents. This is not about you.

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