Where has the year gone?! It's hard to believe it's December already but these cold snowy nights are perfect for cuddling up with a warm blanket and a fairy tale retelling. Enter Bird, Snow, Boy by Helen Oyeyemi. Recipient of the 2012 Hurston/Wright Legacy Award and a Granta Best of Young British Novelist recipient, Oyeyemi specializes in stories rooted in myth and fairy-tales which take the reader on dark and delightful adventures through unorthodox, freewheeling plots.
In Boy, Snow, Bird Oyeyemi serves us a brilliant recasting of the Snow White fairy tale as a story of family secrets, race, beauty, and vanity. In the winter of 1953, Boy Novak arrives by chance in a small town in Massachusetts looking, she believes, for beauty—the opposite of the life she’s left behind in New York. She marries Arturo Whitman, a local widower, and becomes stepmother to his winsome daughter, Snow.
A wicked stepmother is a creature Boy never imagined she’d become, but elements of the familiar tale of aesthetic obsession begin to play themselves out when the birth of Boy’s daughter, Bird, who is dark-skinned, exposes the Whitmans as light-skinned African-Americans passing for white. And even as Boy, Snow, and Bird are divided, their estrangement is complicated by an insistent curiosity about one another. In seeking an understanding that is separate from the image each presents to the world, Boy, Snow, and Bird confront the tyranny of the mirror to ask how much power surfaces really hold.
Dazzlingly inventive and powerfully moving, Boy, Snow, Bird is an astonishing and enchanting novel. With breathtaking feats of imagination, Helen Oyeyemi confirms her place as one of the most original and dynamic literary voices of our time.
If this sounds like something you'd like to read, you can get your copy of the book from the store or online with a 15% discount through the end of December. Remember, you can have it shipped directly to you or come pick it up in store!
Reviews & Interviews
"Helen Oyeyemi" -- BookPage
"'Boy, Snow, Bird' Takes A Closer Look Into The Fairy Tale Mirror" -- NPR
"'Boy, Snow, Bird' Author on Fairy Tales and Feminists With Flawless Prose" -- Flavorwire
"White Lies" -- The New York Times
"Boy, Snow, Bird" -- Kirkus Review
"Snow Whitman" -- Slate
We'll meet at Foggy Pine Books on December 21st at 7:30pm. There will be free wine and snacks for book club members to share. Bring a friend and come discuss the book with us, even if you weren't able to completely finish it or if you didn't like it. You can see the Facebook event & RSVP here.
Foggy Pine Books
Literary Gifts & Events for Boone's Bibliophiles