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TezMillerOz

TezMillerOz

Racist world-building in an upcoming 2017 YA fantasy novel

I know some people miss things that happen on book Twitter, so here's what you missed in the last 24 hours:
 
-A reader read an upcoming YA novel called THE CONTINENT. Though fantasy, it's full of racist tropes: white saviourism; POC who seemingly exist only as plot points in a white character's story. But the biggest problem is the way it frames Native people as "uncivilised" "savages". This aren't just microaggressions - the racism is part of the world-building.
 
-Word spread around Twitter, with other people joining in to share plot points and passages from the book via photos of the text.
 
-Some white people didn't like the obvious flaws pointed out regarding a book they wanted to read. Or because the particular white people just wanted to ignore racism instead of dismantling it. These people dismissed thoughtful critique of the racist tropes as "hate" and "drama".
 
-The author of the book in question contacted one of the book's critics. She explained that she supposedly she wrote it as an "allegory" about privilege. But if you have to explain your book, than the novel itself probably didn't express your point adequately. It was not her intent to harm. But when the effect is this big, intent counts for little. These weren't microaggressions - these were major.
 
-I've RT'd a whole lot of stuff on my Twitter: https://twitter.com/TezMillerOz You can check up on the threads, and they should give you a good overview. They explain this so much better than I can.
 
Please listen to Native/Indigenous people. Please listen to Women Of Color. That's the least we can do. Support and amplify the voices of Natives and POC speaking out. The book has a massive marketing plan which is listed on Edelweiss (screenshots of the plan on Twitter), so it's likely to succeed anyway, so please don't dismiss thoughtful critique as "bullying/harming" the author or the book, or "drama", or "hate".
 
It's important to make informed choices about the books you choose to buy or promote. Now you have the information, the rest is up to you.
 
Thank you for reading.