The fifth book in our Winter/Spring 2019 RETELLINGS book club is Helen Oyeyemi’s Boy, Snow, Bird. More information about the book club is available here. All you need to do to participate is read the book in advance and come on the night of the discussion. As always, book club titles are $1 off in advance of the discussion. And we kindly ask that you rsvp for the book club by emailing us at firstname.lastname@example.org so we have a sense of how many people will be coming.
About Boy, Snow, Bird
From the prizewinning author of What Is Not Yours Is Not Yours and 2019’s Gingerbread, comes a brilliant recasting of the Snow White fairy tale as a story of family secrets, race, beauty, and vanity.
In the winter of 1953, Boy Novak arrives by chance in a small town in Massachusetts looking, she believes, for beauty—the opposite of the life she’s left behind in New York. She marries Arturo Whitman, a local widower, and becomes stepmother to his winsome daughter, Snow.
A wicked stepmother is a creature Boy never imagined she’d become, but elements of the familiar tale of aesthetic obsession begin to play themselves out when the birth of Boy’s daughter, Bird, who is dark-skinned, exposes the Whitmans as light-skinned African-Americans passing for white. And even as Boy, Snow, and Bird are divided, their estrangement is complicated by an insistent curiosity about one another. In seeking an understanding that is separate from the image each presents to the world, Boy, Snow, and Bird confront the tyranny of the mirror to ask how much power surfaces really hold.
Dazzlingly inventive and powerfully moving, Boy, Snow, Bird is an astonishing and enchanting novel. With breathtaking feats of imagination, Helen Oyeyemi confirms her place as one of the most original and dynamic literary voices of our time.