Reading Round Up for October 2020

This month’s Reading Round Up offers a collection of some of the best articles I read, covering topics including remote learning, mental illness, and bad cops. Plus a list of my own written work. Get those tabs ready!

My Writing

Book list: New Young Adult Speculative Fiction October 2020

TV review: The Tension Ramps Up: Lovecraft Country, “Jig-a-Bobo”

Book review: A Children’s Tale for All Ages: Over the Woodward Wall by A. Deborah Baker

Short fiction spotlight: Must-Read Speculative Short Fiction: September 2020

YA fiction spotlight: Ancestral Magic and Battle Dragons: New Young Adult SFF for October, November, and December 2020

TV review: The Day of the Massacre: Lovecraft Country, “Rewind 1921”

Book excerpt: Food History of Napa County, California

Book review: An Entirely New Take on Cosmic Horror: Ring Shout by P. Djèlí Clark

Book review: A Fantasy Worth Savoring: The Midnight Bargain by C. L. Polk

Book review: Foreshadow: Stories to Celebrate the Magic of Reading and Writing YA by Emily X. R. Pan and Nova Ren Suma

Book review: Night of the Mannequins by Stephen Graham Jones

TV review: Family Ties: Lovecraft Country, “Full Circle”

Novelette review: “When God Sits in Your Lap” by Ian Tregillis

Other Works

Black History, Knowledge, Memory & Future II” by Foluke Ifejola Adebisi: “We talk of the fallen antelope and not the lion that killed her and continues to feed on her. We fake-cry over a burning building and ignore those who set fire to it. We talk of Africa without knowing her. And to not know Africa is to not know the world. You do not study the world if such a massive part of it is missing from your knowledge base. You do not study the world.”

The So-Called ‘Kidnapping Club’ Featured Cops Selling Free Black New Yorkers Into Slavery” by Jonathan Daniel Wells for SMITHSONIANMAG.COM: “While the police today emerged from a hodge-podge of national and international iterations, one of the United States’ earliest and most storied forces, the New York City police, offers modern Americans a lesson in the intractability of problems between the black community and the officers sworn to uphold the law. That long history is both bleak and demoralizing. But this past also reminds us that real change will only happen by learning from the collective American experience, one in which those who supported systems of oppression were met by others who bravely battled against them.”

Older Black Folks’ Whole-Body Hatred of Donald Trump” by Michael Arceneaux: “I love that my mom aims to be polite even if the person she’s talking about is spiritually something akin to a boil on the left ass cheek of Satan, but Black elders have earned the right to be especially venomous, given what his victory in the 2016 presidential election signified.”

Me, My Mom, and Her Mental Illness” by Billie-Rae Johnson for Black Perspectives: “My mom has had Schizophrenia my whole life and got it while serving in the army. I am an only child. My parents divorced when I was young. We’re estranged from our other family members because there is a lot of stigma around my mom having a mental illness.  Furthermore, my mom doesn’t have a partner and she’s very anti-social so I’m her main source of social interaction.”

The Students Left Behind by Remote Learning” by Alec MacGillis for ProPublica: “It soon became clear that, even with the computer, this form of schooling wasn’t going to work for Shemar. He had a wireless connection at his grandmother’s house, but he spent some of his days at a row house, a mile to the southwest, that his mother had moved into, in one of her repeated efforts to establish a home for them. A few weeks earlier, a 21-year-old man had been killed a block away. There was no internet, and when his mother called Comcast to ask about the free Wi-Fi it was offering to the families of Baltimore schoolchildren, she was told that a previous tenant had applied, so she couldn’t do so herself. It was a familiar situation for her: so often, when she made an effort on her son’s behalf, it foundered quickly in a bureaucratic dead end.”

What Happened in Room 10?” by Katie Engelhartfor California Sunday Magazine: “That Tuesday night, Helen lay awake and listened to her roommate dying. She heard the nurses moving around. Their whispers. She heard the heaving of the oxygen machine. At some point, someone had closed the curtain that divided the room, but it didn’t do much to mute the noise. The beds were so close together that each woman could hear the other breathing — and that was true on a normal day, before the coughing.”

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