What we don’t talk about by Charlot Kristensen
Format: Physical copy provided by Avery Hill Publishing
Top 3 Genres: Romance, Graphic Novel, Diverse
My rating: Set it on fire/ If you have nothing else to read/ you need to read it/Run and buy it.
To buy the book: CA • US • Bookdep
Add to: Storygraph • Goodreads
Hey bookdragons! Today, I wanted to share with you one of my favorite discoveries of this Summer: What we don’t talk about, a graphic novel that everybody needs to read!
Adam and Farai are an interracial couple that have been together for two years. Farai has finally persuaded Adam to introduce her to his parents, but the visit to the in-laws turns out to be a horrible experience for Farai. Several situations during the introductory dinner make her feel uneasy and ostracised. When confronted about this experience Adam tries to play down the whole situation and does not show any understanding for his partner’s concern. This puts a further strain on their relationship and Farai starts to wonder if she can be with a man who’s family does not accept her and who is not willing to face the difficulties related to an interracial relationship.
I think you got with the synopsis what this graphic novel is about: the difficulties that can come with being in an interracial relationship, no matter how much you can love each other. Farai is Black, while Adam is a white boy, and if they had two beautiful years together in the city, things will start getting sour when they go meet Adam’s family.
There, in their very fancy house, she will have to face all of Adam’s mother racism, little words here and there, that really offend Farai, as they show what her step-parents think of Black people. All the cliches that are part of systemic racism. And when Farai tries to tell Adam how much she is hurt by what is happening, and how wrong it is, he gets upset, telling her she is over-reacting and being to sensitive. As you can imagine, this does not go well. And after trying to be patient, and to point out to Adam how hurtful the comments are, Farai will decide to do something I admire her a lot for: she decides she can’t accept it. She values herself and won’t accept the treatment she is exposed to. No matter how hard it is for her relationship. She was really a beautiful character! And the end comforted me in the choices the author made with her story (but I’ll let you discover what happens exactly when you read the book!)
This graphic novel really talks about the real stuff, without any detour, and a topic that needs to be addressed more! I think it’s important to acknowledge the different forms of racism, if we want to fight it, and to see that it is never acceptable. Especially when it comes to relationships, whether it’s a romantic one or a friendly one. Be there for your BIPOC friends, do not stay silent if you hear something, and show your support!
In a few words
I was very moved by Farai’s story, by her strength, and if the graphic novel is very short, I believe it is long enough for us to assimilate all the important messages it is telling us!
See you for a cup,