[Many thanks to Peter Jordens for bringing this item to our attention.] Gareth Finighan (The Royal Gazette) writes, “A book by a Bermudian author has been given the seal of approval by US media magnate Oprah Winfrey.”
Girlcott, by Florenz Maxwell, was listed as must-read book in a recent edition of Ms Winfrey’s O Magazine.
The coming-of-age novel is set during the 1959 Theatre Boycott and seen through the eyes of Desma Johnson as she approaches her 16th birthday.
Ms Maxwell based her book partly on her own experiences. She was a member of the Progressive Group that organised the boycott in order to break down segregation on the island.
Stephanie Castillo, writing in O Magazine, included Girlcott among “some of the best classic and contemporary books about the Caribbean”.
The magazine article included an interview with Cindy Allman, a promoter of Caribbean culture who has spent the last three years highlighting literature from the region. Ms Allman told the magazine: “I am hosting a Caribbean-only giveaway and someone asked me if Bermuda was included. “The Caribbean is so wide and vast, so this is a time to make that clear.”
The magazine also has a link to a website review of the novel. The review said: “Florenz Maxwell takes a little known fact about Caribbean history and weaves an engaging tale that speaks eloquently to the contemporary experience. Girlcott takes you beyond the image of Bermuda as a piece of paradise and charts a narrative of resistance, hope and the importance of fighting for change.”
The novel was awarded second place in the 2016 Burt Award for Caribbean Literature.
For full review, see https://www.royalgazette.com/general/news/article/20210106/bermudian-writer-singled-out-by-oprahs-o-magazine
Florenz Webbe Maxwell
Jamaica: Blouse & Skirt Books, 2017