Others, Reviews

Review: Annie John by Jamaica Kincaid

My first post! Hello!

I´m not going to bother you with writing about myself, so let´s get to it!

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So, a week or so ago I was asked to read this for my Swedish A Litterature class and this was my first time reading anything by Jamaica Kincaid knowing her books are very big and popular in most international and English-speaking schools. While this wasn´t exactly what I thought it would be, I did enjoy it.
However, there are some things about the book I´m not sure if I enjoyed.
The book takes place on the island Antigua in the Carribean, our main character Annie is a young girl growing up with her father and her mother who she has a particularly close relationship with. Really, I´d say the main thing this whole book is about is that relationship and how it changes and grows and twists as Annie grows up to be a young woman ready to go out into the world, now without her mother there to greet her with kisses when she comes home.

I really liked Jamaica´s writing style in this book. Her style and tone and technique is quite different from anything I´ve read before and while I usually don´t like very long sentences she still managed to make it work. Instead of feeling all over the place it feels like a stream of consciousness all coming from Annie as Kincaid continuously uses a lot of repetition and listing in her lengthy and complex sentences.

One thing I´m not sure if I did like, on the other hand, was how there wasn´t really any buildup in the story. The story in itself feels relevant in its general theme and it keeps the reader´s interest all the way through with different events, but I just feel it could have been building up towards something. I wanted just that little bit more, that final point that makes me think “okay, this is why Annie wants to tell us her story”.

So, all in all, an okay little book. Perfect for a quick reading session where you want to take a trip to the Caribbean or realize you weren’t the only one who would someday have to brave the world without holding your mom´s hand, even if she will always be there to greet you or wish you good luck as you sail away.

3,5/5 stars.

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