I read widely from many genres. Perhaps this blog will feature fewer ratings and reviews, but I certainly intend to write about my reading life - it's the subject I most find myself wanting to talk about.
NoViolet Bulawayo recently appeared in my city. (I took this picture on my iPod.)
She read, of course, from "We Need New Names," and I learned something very important about the book: How the main character's name sounds. Of course, if you've read the book, you know her name is Darling. To my Midwestern ears, that's a distinctly two-syllable word, with the accent on the first syllable, a true trochee, in poetic terms. "Dar," like car; "ling," like swing. I suppose if you live in other parts of the country, you might say it differently: "dah-ling," "darlin'," etc.
For Ms. Bulawayo, who still carries a strong accent of her native Zimbabwe, Darling's name is almost a spondee. She gives a little bit less stress to the first syllable, so technically, it's an iamb, but both syllables get quite a bit of stress. And to my ears, it sounded very close to the name "Darlene." I heard "Dar-LING." So now I know.
Her reading was beautiful. The book was fascinating. And she answered my question in the q&a! Can't wait for more from her.