This Brutal House by Niven Govinden
My rating: 3 of 5 stars
This Brutal House is moving, visceral; Govinden makes you live every moment, each line evoking a mood, a world.
You are there with the Mothers as they sit in silent protest on the steps of City Hall.
You are Teddy growing up broken but driven, learning to lie in order to fix things, to quietly ease things for the Mothers, using his position in City Hall to try to find a resolution.
You walk the floor to the shade of the vogue caller, living the chaos of the balls, the noise and heat of the dance floor.
Where This Brutal House fails, for me at least, is in its clarity. It's not enough for me to feel it. I need more concrete details. I have the bare bones of the story, but as Govinden throws us between the Mothers, Teddy and the Vogue Caller, it feels like information is falling between the cracks.
I'm not of this world of Mothers and Children and balls and drag. I don't know enough to understand the underlying meanings, to read between the lines. I don't have the history to fill in the blanks.
At the end of the book, I am left slightly confused. Emotional but confused.
Note: I received a complimentary copy of this book from Dialogue Books via Netgalley. Opinions expressed in this review are completely my own.
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