Cover Image: A Change Is Gonna Come

A Change Is Gonna Come

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Member Reviews

A great and powerful collection of stories by various authors – some familiar and some completely new, but all equally brilliant.
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A Change Is Gonna Come is a fantastic collection of short stories and poetry by established and upcoming UK BAME authors. All centred around the theme of change, the stories range from contemporary to sci-fi and cover topics such as mental health and hate speech. Each author brings their own unique view of what change means to them and it is clear that this is very personal at times. Several stories/poems were very moving.

I purchased a copy of this book for our library on publication and it has proven popular. It has featured on multiple displays and is listed among the suggested reads for our Sixth Form Book Club.
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Great book, especially to introduce readers to new authors. Diversity, inclusion and representation are so important for everyone, and books like this one are leading the way.
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3.5 *

Anthologies are tricky beasts; too long and they feel like a chore, too short and they lose purpose. This anthology of UK BAME writers falls somewhere in-between.
The outstanding short stories here are: 'Astounding Talent! Unequaled performance!' by Catherine Johnson- a fictional retelling of the Georgian circus performer William Darby/Pablo Fanque, a Black orphan who became a renowned circus owner in his own right; 'The Clean Sweep' by Patrice Lawrence about a dystopic regressive therapy program run in desolate Brighton; and Yasmin Rahman's 'Fortune Favours the Bold' about a Muslim teen finding confidence after a recent terror attack. What made these three stories stand out for me above the others was the fact that they were coherent and the author seemed passionate about the topic.
Whilst the other tales were decent, they were either let down by their structure, plot devices, or narrative voices that just didn't feel right for the scenario.

I'd recommend this for readers aged 13+. TW for bereavement, Islamaphobia, OCD, Racism, Terrorism. Also contains sexual references.
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A collection of short stories that are so overwhelming important. Each story is about a different diverse character and their experiences, beautifully written and entirely engaging.
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I really enjoyed this anthology. An anthology written by British BAME authors that covers such a wide range of important topics is something everyone needs to read in the current climate. I wish we had more of these books!
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Absolutly loved this anthology.. The stories are varied, featuring a range of voices.

I loved the first poem in the anthology called The Elders On The Wall by Muse Okwonga. The first six words are what made me fall in love with this poem “I wish to change the world” I felt like it was written for me, I felt like the state the worlds in now loads of people are feeling the same way and I wish that I could change a lot of things but I can’t because as it says in the poem “their’s a thousand mile high wall with no visible place to grip”

Again I felt through the whole of the poem that it just spoke to me and the hardships that life can bring us through the choices we have to make and that how that the majority of the time we are afraid of what’s to come but like it says in the poem “Change is hard” I think that phrase especially speaks to younger generations as I feel like sometimes we lose hope when trying to accomplish something. The Elders On The Wall really hits home on the fact that change is hard but A change is going to come!

I think the best thing about this poem is that it’s up for interpretation and there are so many different ways that people can take it.  I took it in the way it talks about the world today. How did you take it?
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Really enjoyed this anthology of short stories by BAME authors. I often find with anthologies that I like some but not all of the stories whereas with this anthology I thought each and every story was brilliant. I loved the breadth of stories told here, each one so different from the one that came before it.
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Review: I don't think it's an exaggeration to say that this was probably one of the most anticipated releases of Summer 2017. After the success of their Christmas and home themed anthology, Little Tiger announced a BAME YA anthology of poetry and prose with some of the country's best YA voices. I've read several YA anthologies this year and I really like the format and introduction to new authors as well as more work from authors I already know.

Before I talk about the stories themselves, I think it's worth saying how vitally important it is to for an anthology like this to be published and also how depressing it is that books like this are unusual. Darren Chetty wrote the foreword and he wrote a brilliant essay within The Good Immigrant about children being able to see themselves, or as the case may be currently sadly not, in literature.

I particularly found Nikesh Strukla's contribution We Who? thought-provoking and depressingly realistic. It stayed with me afterwards and was very powerful. I think with the news in recent weeks and our 2017 world,  it shines an honest light. Tanya Byrne's Hackney Moon was beautifully written and poignant. I also always enjoy Catherine Johnson's writing and her addition to the anthology was not an exception to the rule there.

[perfectpullquote align="left" cite="" link="" color="" class="" size=""]It stayed with me afterwards and was very powerful[/perfectpullquote]

A Change Is Gonna Come is not just about the established voices within UKYA though. Stripes held a competition and have published four new BAME authors in the anthology. I look forward to hearing more about these each of these talented authors in the future. Each story showed insight and had a strong, unique voice.

As an aside this anthology is also named after one of my favourite songs; A Change Is Gonna Come by Sam Cooke who was a brilliant singer and the song became an anthem in the 1960s civil rights movement (and the song has had a lasting legacy and acclaim since)

This is one of those cases where the hype is worth it; A Change Is Gonna Come has been talked about in the blogosphere for some time and so it should. It offers something for everyone and is important and meaningful and a brilliant addition to UKYA.
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Excellent, inspiring writing, beautifully put together and worth a read and a reread.
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Featured in a post on my top YA books of 2017: I also need to give a special shout out to [...] A Change is Gonna Come, Little Tiger Press’ anthology of short stories and poetry written by authors from BAME backgrounds. It’s harder to include an anthology in a list like this, as you will never love every contribution equally, but I was a particular fan of Nikesh Shukla’s We Who? and Aisha Bushby’s Marionette Girl. I’m delighted to hear Aisha now has an agent and I will be looking out for her work in the future!
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Book Review:

I had been excited for a long time before finding out about A Change Is Gonna Come so when I got the chance to read it I was very happy and the anthology did not disappoint and it is something that everyone should read. 

A Change Is Gonna Come is a very diverse book which was a very quick read for me as it kept me entertained throughout. I really liked that there was a wide variety of genres in the book especially Catherine Johnson's historical fiction read which I found really interesting to read about and really enjoyed and I would love to read more stories like this in the future. 

The book also gave new voices the chance to be published in the book and these were really enjoyable to read from. I especially liked Mary Bello and Aisha Bushby's story as it focused on OCD and it was just really well written and is a story that I would not forget it.

I also really love Nikesh Shukla's story as it really did fit into Brexit Britain and I really the concept and I can't wait to read more of his books in the future, YA or otherwise.

The Verdict:

A Change Is Gonna Come is a widely diverse short story collection that has stories for everyone and kept me engaged throughout.
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I loved this. All the stories were unique, with a great blend of voices, but the collection is seamless and flows incredibly well.
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A gorgeous, highly important collection. I genuinely believe this book has the power to change the world. Would love to see more from these voices.
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Actual rating: 3.5 stars.

An anthology stuffed with BAME writers, featuring the kind of stories which I've never encountered in YA - and often have never seen published - before. 

Four of the short stories in this anthology earned 5 stars: 'Fortune Favours the Bold', 'Dear Asha', 'A Refuge' and 'Marionette Girl'. Discussing a range of topics, including how media coverage of terror attacks impacts the Muslim community, the true meaning of family, the harrowing scenarios occurring daily in the Calais jungle and the struggle with OCD, I was astounded by how wide the range of stories featured it.

I wish I could have given 'A Change Is Gonna Come' as a whole 5 stars, because it's brilliant to see an anthology like this being published, and I hope more follow sooner rather than later. Sadly, the other short stories and poems were of varying quality. I'm not a huge fan of magical realism, so struggled to really understand a couple of the stories, and thought closing with 'Of Lizard Skin and Dust Storms' was rather weak after how remarkably powerful the previous story was. 

Despite not enjoying some of the stories, I would highly recommend 'A Change Is Gonna Come' to EVERYONE. Whether you're a YA reader or not, these stories will touch you and give you a lot to think about.
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A fantastic collection that will inspire and empower people of all ages, colour, creed and religion.
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I always find it difficult to review an anthology, because there are lots of little stories in these pages and all of them were incredible. 

Not only did this introduce me to lots of great new authors, it also spanned a range of very different types of stories, from fantasy to contemporary, romance to poems and everything in between. I really enjoyed all of them, with girls learning about refugees, finding first love and acceptance, overcoming anxiety and battling friends about racism, all the stories covered change and how scary it is sometimes.

Like I said, there were lots of different topics discussed, not just race and diversity - things like OCD and anxiety, empathy, love and being true to yourself. I think this whole anthology is incredibly important to see different stories, different experiences in print, and what it means to want change, whatever scale it's in.
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The brilliance of an anthology of short stories and poems is that there is almost always going to be something for everyone and this is definitely the case with A Change is Gonna Come. Every story and poem in this book is unique and interesting and they all kept me returning to the book, itching to find out what story would be next.

A wonderful part about this book is the theme of change and how each of the authors have interpreted this differently and come up with some fascinating, moving and powerful stories. It’s only when reading anthologies like this that you can see just how important short stories can be. Sometimes a short story has a way to pack a punch faster than a novel can.

While I don’t want to pick favourites, I do have to admit that I loved some of the stories in this anthology more than others – and I think that is absolutely okay. I love how each of the stories were so unique and fascinating, some contemporary, some dystopian, some fantasy. It was a wonderful mix of genres that really brought the book together as a whole. So my top three stories were:

Marionette Girl by Aisha Bushby
Hackney Moon by Tanya Byrne
Fortune Favours the Bold by Yasmin Rahman

These were all very different (although oddly they are all contemporary!), the first about a girl with OCD who struggles with change (something I can highly relate to), the second a very cute romance between two girls, the third about how a young Muslim girl responds to media and societal hate after terrorist attacks. All three stories were incredibly powerful, entertaining and thought provoking. They filled me with many emotions throughout them and I had to take a small break after reading each of these stories.

Of course, the biggest draw of this book is that every single story has a character of colour as its protagonist. They all show the world how wonderful and human people of colour are and spotlight a little on how they live in this world. I cannot tell you how much empathy this book gave me – among many other books I have read – and I truly hope that this is the start of a change in the publishing world. Because as the book says, A Change is Gonna Come, whether they like it or not.
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Change is an incredible collection of short stories and poems from a collection of beautifully diverse voices. Men, women, new voices, established authors, story writers, poets – it’s all represented. I was sent a copy from the gorgeous Charlie from Stripes, as I was part of the blog tour (if you’d like to read that then check it out here: #ChangeBook blog tour) and I was SO EXCITED when I opened the envelope and saw the gorgoeusly yellow cover!

The thing that stands out most to me about #ChangeBook is how it so seamlessly celebrates diverse voices, diverse characters and diverse stories, but that at the bottom of everything there’s this humanity about it. We’re all human. Everyone deserves to be celebrated. It’s so incredible to read stories from people of different heritage and different backgrounds – so many books lack this.

My stand out stories from Change Book are definitely Aisha Busby‘s story: which was heartbreaking in a very quiet (but very teary) way. Anyone who’s ever loved something will feel this and Tanya Byrne‘s wonderful account of love: a total winner for me. It spoke to me in quite a deep way and the writing felt very personal. I want more from Byrne. So much more.

I would definitely encourage EVERYONE to go out and buy this. As someone who doesn’t openly embrace poetry, it was refreshing to read some poetry alongside wonderful stories!
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This is truly a much-needed addition to the growing trend of of YA anthologies. A Change is Gonna Come is collection of poetry and short-stories by UK-based black and other minority ethnic authors. The stories contained within this volume are varied and interesting, featuring protagonists from a wide range of backgrounds: from a girl with anxiety and OCD, to a blind boy who discovers wormholes and time travel. The running theme is, as the title suggests, on the idea of change - whether in the course of an individual's life, or in the wide scheme of global politics, which is, to use 2016's word of the year, a dumpster fire. My only issue is that I find it quite difficult, on occasion, to connect with short story collections, but this is very much a fault of mine, not the book's.
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