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Under My Skin: Gleaner Sizzling Summer Pick

Under My SKinJamaica’s oldest newspaper, The Gleaner, asked the question: “What do you get when you read a selection of new stories and poetry written by Black writers or writers of Caribbean descent from Toronto and the Caribbean?”

Book reviewer Neil Armstrong answered that “You get a m*lange of writings that explore a wide range of subjects – some with common themes, others taboo; some mythical, others invested in reality – all stimulating to the senses and heralding the arrival of voices that demand to be heard.”

Among his top picks in Caribbean literature (or literature from authors of Caribbean descent), are Pepperpot: Best Stories from the Caribbean (an anthology of outstanding entries from the 2013 Commonwealth Short Story Prize), She SEX: Prose & Poetry. Sex & the Caribbean Woman, and, all the way from Toronto where his book was launched this spring, Orville Lloyd-Douglas’ Under My Skin.

Under My Skin asks a lot of questions, questions that demand answers: Why are young black gay men invisible in Canada’s queer and black communities? How do young black men deal with multiple oppressions in relation to their race and gender? Is Canada truly a multicultural nation?

The book, which has been hailed as “a raw and passionate exploration of desire” and “visceral and emotionally compelling” by York University Professor Sheila L. Cavanagh, is now garnering attention in the Carribean for its powerful social messages and evocative language.

“Like his first book of poetry, You Don’t Know Me,” writes Armstrong, “…Douglas’ new work challenges ideas of identity, multiculturalism, tolerance, sexuality, race and unrequited love.”

“He also pulls from his experience as a young, gay, black man born in Canada, living in Brampton, Ontario and claiming space despite doubts and those who would want to restrict his progress.”

Orville Lloyd Douglas is a writer and social activist. His writing examines image versus reality of tolerance and multiculturalism in Canada from the perspective of a young, gay, black man. His poetry has received critical acclaim from George Elliott Clarke, who described Douglas’ first collection, You Don’t Know Me, as “bold and brash” and Ginsbergesque in “the same pell-mell rush of ideas and images that drives Howl.” Douglas resides in Brampton, Ontario

You can read the full review at: The Gleaner

And purchase your copy of Under My Skin at: http://www.guernicaeditions.com/title/9781550718492

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