'All Decent Animals'
By Oonya Kempadoo
Kempadoo's third novel looks at the personal and aesthetic choices of a multifaceted cast of characters on the Caribbean island of Trinidad - a country still developing economically but rich culturally, aiming at "world-class" status amid its poor island cousins.
It is a novel about relationships, examined through the distinct rhythms of the city of Port of Spain. Loyalties, love, conflicting cultures and creativity come into play as Ata, a young woman working in carnival design but curious about writing, and her European boyfriend, Pierre, negotiate the care of their friend Fraser, a closeted gay man dying from AIDS.
The contradictory Trinidadian setting becomes a parallel character to Fraser's Cambridge-derived artistic sensibility and an antagonist to Ata's creative journey.
'I Am Having So Much Fun Here Without You: A Novel'
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By Courtney Maum
In this reverse love story set in Paris and London, which Glamour hailed as one of the "10 Best Books to Add to Your Summer Reading List Right This Second," a failed monogamist attempts to woo his wife back and to answer the question: Is it really possible to fall back in love with your spouse?
Despite the success of his first solo show in Paris and the support of his brilliant French wife and young daughter, 34-year-old British artist Richard Haddon is too busy mourning the loss of his American mistress to a famous cutlery designer to appreciate his fortune. But after Richard discovers that a painting he originally made for his wife, Anne - when they were first married and deeply in love - has sold, it shocks him back to reality and he resolves to reinvest wholeheartedly in his family life.
Rudderless and remorseful, Richard embarks on a series of misguided attempts to win Anne back while focusing his creative energy on a provocative art piece to prove that he's still the man she once loved.