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Information is power. Our mission at Portside is to seek out and to provide information that empowers you -- that empowers the left. Every day we search hundreds of sources to connect you with the most interesting, striking and useful material. Just once a year we appeal to you to contribute to make it possible to continue this work. Please help.

books

An American Marriage

Zakiya Harris The Rumpus
This review focuses on a riveting novel about an African American couple caught up in the criminal justice system.

books

Literature’s Inherited Trauma

Nur Nasreen Ibrahim The Millions
Jesmyn Ward is best known for her novel Salvage the Bones (2011). In this new book, says reviewer Ibrahim, "she traces an American highway odyssey, from the Mississippi Gulf Coast to Parchman Farm, the notorious state penitentiary."

books

The Underground Railroad

Hope Wabuke The Root
In this novel, Whitehead reimagines both slavery and the resistance to it.

books

Counternarratives: The Power of Narrative

Eric McDowell Michigan Quarterly Review
One book that's making it onto lots of people's best-of-the-year lists is Counternarratives, a collection of stories and novellas by John Keene. It's an extraordinary collection that uses historical fiction to make visible the human beings that racism and imperialism have pretended were not there. Not only that, but, as McDowell shows us in his review, this is a set of awfully good stories, too.

books

Lady Sings the Blues

Walton Muyumba The Atlantic
In her eleventh novel, God Help the Child, Toni Morrison has created what Walton Muyumba calls "a tragicomic jazz opera played out in four parts." Here is his review of this eagerly awaited new work by the artist who is arguably the greatest novelist working in the United States today.
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