Let s Play White White brings with it dreams of respect of wealth of simply being treated as a human being It s the one thing Walter will never be But what if he could play white the way so many others seem to do W

  • Title: Let's Play White
  • Author: Chesya Burke
  • ISBN: 9781937009991
  • Page: 295
  • Format: Paperback
  • White brings with it dreams of respect, of wealth, of simply being treated as a human being It s the one thing Walter will never be But what if he could play white, the way so many others seem to do Would it bring him privilege or simply deny the pain The title story in this collection asks those questions, and then moves on to challenge notions of race, privilege, perWhite brings with it dreams of respect, of wealth, of simply being treated as a human being It s the one thing Walter will never be But what if he could play white, the way so many others seem to do Would it bring him privilege or simply deny the pain The title story in this collection asks those questions, and then moves on to challenge notions of race, privilege, personal choice, and even life and death with equal vigor From the spectrum spanning despair and hope in What She Saw When They Flew Away to the stark weave of personal struggles in Chocolate Park, Let s Play White speaks with the voices of the overlooked and unheard I Make People Do Bad Things shines a metaphysical light on Harlem s most notorious historical madame, and then, with a deft twist into melancholic humor, Cue Change brings a zombie esque apocalypse, possibly for the betterment of all mankind.Gritty and sublime, the stories of Let s Play White feature real people facing the worlds they re given, bringing out the best and the worst of what it means to be human If you re ready to slip into someone else s skin for a while, then it s time to come play white.Blurbs These raw, brutal stories, often with intriguingly open endings, display an odd and unsettling relationships to the poetry of violence These dark tales announce the arrival of a formidable new master of the macabre Samuel R Delany, author of Dhalgren and Through the Valley of the Nest of Spiders What a stunning collection Let s Play White and so on time Chesya Burke has touched something special in her stories I m a big Octavia Butler fan and I see a peek of that as well as some latter day Toni Morrison within these pages I see the light and warmth Chesya is offering There definitely is magic in that The short story, next to poetry, is the most difficult writing form Chesya has tamed it and made it yield to her touch Nikki Giovanni, Grammy nominated spoken word artist and poetCover Artist Jordan CasteelAbout the Author Chesya Burke has published over forty short stories in various venues including Dark Dreams Horror and Suspense by Black Writers, Voices From the Other Side, and Whispers in the Night, each published by Kensington Publishing Corp as well as the historical, science, and speculative fiction magazine, Would That It Were, and many Several of her articles appeared in the African American National Biography, published by Harvard and Oxford University Press, and she won the 2004 Twilight Tales award for short fiction Chesya attends Agnes Scott College, where she studies creative writing and the African diaspora as it relates to race, class and gender Many of these themes find themselves appearing in her fiction.

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    One thought on “Let's Play White”

    1. Find this and other Reviews at In Tori LexThis short story collection rocked my socks off.  Each story had enough real world and fantastical elements to help suspend your disbelief in a entertaining way. The African American experience in America can be horrific, it is a reality that belongs in some fictional horror story but fortunately is very real. Within very few pages, I became attached to characters and longed for the stories to continue.  This author has an incredible talent to draw the [...]

    2. This was an extremely uneven collection of short stories. The best of them were absolutely stunning, heart-wrenching and thought-provoking. The worst were clunky, unsubtle, and lost their power (for me at least) as a result. All of the stories had some sort of fantastic element; unfortunately, the fantastic element seemed more likely to weaken the story than strengthen it. Still, good and bad, it's a collection very much concerned with power dynamics within families, between men and women, betwe [...]

    3. Meeting a book is a lot like meeting a person for the first time. The setting, the company we find ourselves in (the book included), and the general ambiance all have an impact. The honest truth of the matter is that if I - a middle-class white guy in my late twenties - had not had the pleasure of meeting Chesya Burke at Readercon this past year, I probably would have skipped over her collection Let's Play White. I would have judged it solely on the title, and Jordan Casteel's excellent cover, a [...]

    4. Very painful, very powerful reading.A lot of it about the post-Civil War black experience, and a lot of it about the current day black experience.There were some that drove me to tears.

    5. I imagine some readers might have avoided Chesya Burke's collection due to the title, convinced that the stories were not merely concerned with the black experience, but intended specifically for a black readership. To avoid Let's Play White for that reason would be a mistake, though, for any reader interested in a unique take on the horror and fantasy genres. The stories in this collection take place in a variety of settings, both in terms of time and place. Some are contemporary and urban, whi [...]

    6. I liked Burke's style and her characters' voices, and how she tackles the weird and horror. In the midst of all the stories "The Unremembered" hit me in the face with the worst disability trope, in this case (view spoiler)[ an autistic character is actually a griot that inherits the memories of her ancestors and once she learns to deal with them, she's cured (and apparently able to cure others)(hide spoiler)]. The rest of the collection was solid, with "Purse", "CUE: Change" and "The Teachings a [...]

    7. I was really excited to read this collection but in the end the abrupt ending of most of the stories just left me feeling unsatisfied with the effort. The one exception was the zombie story "CUE: Change" which I really enjoyed.

    8. Easily deserves a 6th or 7th star. Without a doubt some of the best short fiction I've read in a very long time.

    9. A collection of horror/dark fantasy/historical fiction stories about the experiences of black, poor and/or female people in the United States - a sadly-uncommon viewpoint in the genre. Thematically, Burke's stories tend to revolve around awakenings of various sorts, and the fact that her protagonists tend to end their stories on an upward trajectory is, again, an unusual one in the genre - there's a lot of breaking free from false consciousness here (what the kids call getting "woke"). The epigr [...]

    10. I can't say enough good things about this collection by Chesya Burke. All of the stories are gut-punching and memorable, unique, original, and gripping to read, especially the piece "The Teachings and Redemption of Ms. Fannie Lou Mason." Just amazing. This book deserves a much wider readership and far wider recognition for its excellence.

    11. In "Let's Play White," a collection of dark fantasy and horror short fiction, Chesya Burke "weaves African and African-American historical legend and standard horror themes into stories that range from gritty subway gore fests to a sympathetic take on zombies.[1]" The stories explore not only issues of race, but also of power, need, loss, and all the other darker elements of human existence to create fiction that is more than simply macabre. These stories grab the reader and demand that she thin [...]

    12. Chesya Burke's collection of short stories imbues the lives and experiences of African Americans, past and present, with genre elements like ghosts, demons, and zombies. The combination works well in some stories, but others fell flat for me.I was most impressed by “CUE: Change,” a zombie narrative that plays with expectations and is probably the most original and well-developed piece in the collection. I also enjoyed Burke's detailed depictions of urban life in “Walter and the Three-Legge [...]

    13. It took me a while to get into this one. I read the first couple stories and they seemed alright, but didn't quite click with me. I persisted. And then I hit one of my worst periods mental health-wise in months, and suddenly I 'got' it. Burke's stories bring to life all your deepest anxieties, fears, terrors. She takes the violence people suffer through in our society every day - things like poverty, joblessness, racism, sexual violence - and she gives it an embodiment outside the mind and flesh [...]

    14. My second Women in Horror Month read. (Only managed 2 this year, but what a great 2!) This book does something I have rarely seen accomplished well in fiction: It makes injustice and the sense of being socially trapped in a sick system the root of an awful, claustrophobic, paralyzing fear--without going very far at all from the real world. (That said, the speculative elements are well-chosen and anything but run of the mill.) The stories in this collection are filled with sharp bites that leave [...]

    15. Let's Play White by Chesya Burke is an excellent collection of nameless myths, darkness and hope. Burke tugs readers through shadowy places where hope still tries to linger, even if the people have given up. She also takes us to places where light is strong and vibrant, but people can't accept it. A wonderful collection, highly recommended, my favorites are the urban voodoo-themed ″Chocolate Park″ and the powerful rural fantasy novella ″The Teachings and Redemption of Ms. Fannie Lou Mason [...]

    16. What I like best about these eleven stories, which range in tone from the fantastic to the horrific, is that Burke writes about people and situations I rarely get to read about in speculative fiction. Not just the African-American experience, though that's different enough in itself from what you find in run of the mill speculative fiction, but characters who are down and out, who are at the end of their ropes, who are blamed for things they didn't do and know damn well why. Burke has a strong p [...]

    17. A short story collection, mostly but not all speculative. Some very raw and rough stories - lots of emotion, some more speculative than others. I particularly liked the novella that ends the collection, and found her zombie story a refreshingly new take. This author is still in college, I think, by her bio - so I imagine she will achieve astonishing heights if she's already writing stuff this powerful!

    18. Elsewhere, someone described this collection to me as "raw" and that seems like exactly the right word. The characters and the situations are unvarnished and honest and it's not always comfortable, nor is it meant to be. "CUE: Change" is unlike any zombie story I've ever read before, in a world where there is a veritable flood of zombie stories, and "The Teachings and Redemption of Ms. Fannie Lou Mason" is really the one story above any other that's going to stick with me.

    19. I thought this book was great, but man, you need to schedule about twenty minutes between stories just for time to decompress. They're short stories, but they're really rich, and I couldn't go just straight from one into the next.I also thought they were exceptionally scary, but more scary like THE ORPHANAGE than scary like THE SHINING.

    20. Eh. It's not often that my rating differs a lot from a average rating but that's happened this time. I really mean to give 2.5 stars but I always round up cause we don't have that option. These stories just didn't do it for me. There were a couple that I really liked but overall the book didn't impress me.

    21. Burke has a distinctive voice, often very poetic. Her characters are strong, diverse, and fully formed. Women and people of color are always at the fore, shown navigating mundane and fantastic situations in largely (though not always) white-controlled spaces. It's a poignant set of stories, and I highly recommend it.

    22. The stories are individually very powerful, but the transitions between the. is sometimes a little jarring. It's a collection not to be missed, even if it's not one that begs to be read in one sitting to absorb the full emotional arc of the anthology.

    23. Absolutely brilliant collection. "“The Teachings and Redemption of Ms. Fannie Lou Mason" was my favourite.

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