We’re back on book reviews – this is the first review on Catherine’s Corner’s Book Club of 2021 and we’re kicking off with Hold by Michael Donkor.

This was another book from my box of stories order so not one I had chosen, but one I would recommend others read.

It’s quite different from the books I’ve previously reviewed. This one is written from the perspective of a black woman – she starts the story in Africa as a housekeeper but then moves to London to study. This different perspective to my own is one of the reasons why I enjoyed the book so much.

The book shines a spotlight on her expectations – and disappointments – of coming to London. As someone who had moved from rural England to London, it was interesting to see the different expectations between her and me.

The story is a bit of a slow burner – it’s definitely more a story where the characters development is more of a focus than other books I’ve read. We understand reactions to certain challenges, including death and racism. There’s also a strong focus on African traditions – including some language. When the first page included a glossary I was a tad worried it was going to be a challenge, but the language isn’t used that frequently to make it hard to follow.

Book can quite often be used for us to escape reality and take us somewhere new – this one succeeded in transporting me into a someone’s else head and to consider things from their point of view. And help to understand why some characters weren’t liked, but then could be.

Next up, I’ll be reading and reviewing The last Horseman by David Gilman. Let me know in the comments below if you read any great reads in 2020 that I should pop on my “to read list”.

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