Yaa Gyasi, author of the Homegoing, writes about how her love for libraries started at an early age.
“I can’t remember how old I was when my father took me to get a library card, but I remember how my whole body felt charged with excitement. My fingers tingled as I picked out the huge stack of books to take home with me that day. My library card came with a sense of freedom, of adventure, not unlike that which many young people feel when getting a driver’s license. With the card, as with a car, I could go anywhere, do anything. I had long been a lover of books, a voracious,ravenous reader, but I had also grown up with parents who were forever on the strictest of budgets. Buying books was out of the question, but no one ever turned down a trip to the library. To see my name on the card, to not have to ask my parents to get a book for me,it was, perhaps, the first time in my life I felt in full control. The librarian went over the rules of library card ownership with me. She looked at my large stack of books and said, wow remember, if you can’t finish these in two weeks, you have to come back and re-check them.’ My first thought was, “Who would need two weeks to read a book?” I’m older now. The speed at which I read has slowed, but my love for libraries has marched steadily on.”
Praise for Homegoing:
“The hypnotic debut novel by Yaa Gyasi, a stirringly gifted writer . . . magical . . . the great, aching gift of the novel is that it offers, in its own way, the very thing that enslavement denied its descendants: the possibility of imagining the connection between the broken threads of their origins.” —Isabel Wilkerson, The New York Times Book Review
“Gripping.” —Sam Sacks, Wall Street Journal
“Gyasi is a deeply empathetic writer, and each of the novel’s 14 chapters is a savvy character portrait that reveals the impact of racism from multiple perspectives . . . A promising debut that’s awake to emotional, political, and cultural tensions across time and continents.” —Kirkus Reviews