Do you have these National Book Award 2015 winning books on your bookshelf?by Team Versus November 22, 2015
We write to taste life twice, in the moment and in retrospect – Anais Nin.
The quote what may seem like a simple sentence but it has a far deeper meaning that any ordinary person can decipher. If you have a penchant for writing or for reading, you probably would understand how deep that is. Why is the quote relevant right now, you may ask? Well, nothing can perfectly describe the book or rather the life of Ta-Nehisi Coates and Adam Johnson, the rising literary stalwarts, who have been recently conferred with the National Book Award for their works – Between the World and Me (Non-fiction by Coates) and The Orphan Master’s Son (Fiction by Johnson). The National Book Award is for Authors, what Oscars is for the Actors. It is one of the most prestigious awards that honour the author’s writings. So without any further ado let’s get down to know what these books are all about and get a glimpse of the Author’s life and their writing credentials.
The book written, by a former journalist, Ta-Nehisi Coates, is an inspiring tale of his own life that draws attention towards one of the most underlying problems of today, racial abuse. The book is a recount of palpable life of Coates as he was growing up and the kind of hardships that he had to go through during his growing years. The book written in the form a letter to his teenage son deftly reveals the supremacy of the Whites and their dominance over the blacks.
The narrative is quite fascinating and yet hard hitting to the minds of the readers as it awakens them to the harsh realities of the racial abuse that continues to exist right at the heart of America’s lifestyle and yet is cleverly shadowed. In this book Coates describes every scene with so much retrospective analysis that as a reader you could literally feel the pain that he has endured and draws your empathy towards the situation.
Amidst all the heart wrenching narrations of his growing up life, towards the end of the book, Coates is seen criticizing the black parents around the world who advise their children to be “twice as good” to be successful in their lives. The book hammers the message loud and clear that the life of the blacks is in jeopardy. All in all, the book is quite an interesting read; it is an inspirational tale and at the same time an eye-opener.
The Pulitzer Award winner, Adam Johnson is no new name in the literary world. In this harrowing novel, Adam talks with great intricate details and intrigue about The ‘Hermit Kingdom,’ better known as North Korea and the way of life in this intensely communist country. The novel is based on the main character, Jun Do, a former soldier in the North Korean Army, who then turns to become a kidnapper and finally turns to be a surveillance officer. The book is a memoir of Jun Do as he recounts his life story and his struggles to stay alive through the government bureaucracy.
There are very few writers around the world who have the capacity to fill intense emotions in the fictional characters and make him/her an inspiration for the generation and Adam Johnson is one such genius who not only puts in a lot of thought in visualizing his characters but also makes him/her reach out to the readers’ heart. The book set in the times of the Kim Jong-Il the eccentric ruler who ruled North Korea with an Iron Fist, conjures the government’s tireless propaganda of being the most benevolent, virtuous nation. But, as Jun Do grows, he learns that the government has over shadowed the life of the citizens with the roles that they are expected to fulfil towards the state and that any form of opposition or even casting a doubt about the greatness of state leads to prison, torture or death.
Adam Johnson deserves to be commended for writing this remarkable and daring novel, which not only unveils the frightening veil of the mysterious Kingdom of North Korea but also excavates the true meaning of sacrifice and love.
So, what are you waiting for? Grab these books now and find yourself lost in the world these writers have vividly painted in their works. Trust us, you will not regret!