Hello out there! Last week I finally picked up a copy of Swing Time by Zadie Smith. . .
Zadie Smith is an accomplished novelist of Jamaican and English heritage. She has authored numerous works of fiction in which two, White Teeth and On Beauty, changed my life. She has a natural gift for crafting stories that center around the exploration of race, class, gender, and the immigrant experience in contemporary England. Smith has an amazing ability to dedicate enough space and time to the development of each character leaving even the most introverted reader with the feeling that they have either acquired a new best friend or been whisked away to England and are living the experience with them. She has further earned rock star status in my book by the fact that she tends to explore the experiences of many generations and groups that were born and raised or migrated to England and has avoided the temptation to paint or depict a uniform “immigrant experience.” Swing Time begins its story in London in the 1980’s with the introduction of the young narrator who finds solace in swing and bebop music, dance , and old black and white musicals and who interestingly enough remains nameless throughout the entire book.Tracey is the narrator’s best friend who like the narrator is biracial and equally shares a love for dance but unlike the narrator is not cursed with flat fleet. The narrator’s mother, a proud Jamaican immigrant who desperately desires to both intellectually separate herself from the masses and serve as their champion, has become one of my favorite characters thus far while the narrator’s father, has left me wanting to know more about his background.I am halfway through the book and cannot wait to share my review!