In their breathtaking international debut, Aaiún Nin plumbs the depths of the lived and enduring effects of colonialism in their native country, Angola. In these pages, Nin untangles complexities of exile, the reckoning of familial love, but also reveals the power of queer love and desire through the body that yearns to love and be loved. Nin shows the ways in which faith and devotion serve as forms of oppression and interrogates the nature of home by reclaiming the persistent echoes of trauma. A captivating blend of evocative prose and intimate testimony, Nin speaks to the universal vulnerability of existence.
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Average rating from 9 members
This is Ms. Nin’s first collection, though she’s been writing and publishing since 2016. Some of these poems are a bit rough around the edges, yes, but again, they speak deeply to queer (especially in religious/homophobic environments) and immigrant experiences. She also plays around with format in interesting ways, though admittedly the ARC isn’t formatted in places so that could also be part of it. Definitely intrigued by what I’m seeing here and will be following her writing. I will warn for implied child sexual abuse.
This was a beautiful and raw poetry collection, and I really liked it. I think Aaiún Nin was the potential of becoming a great and well know poetry writer. Their poetry explores themes that are closer to their life, like their feelings as an immigrant in a foreign country or as a Black queer person. Critiquing poetry is very hard. To me, it’s either I like it or I don’t like. I have to FEEL the poem, some sort of connection has to be made, and I did feel it while reading this collection. I was so absorbed that I read everything in one sitting. I’m gonna give this another go in the future, because I wanna re-read each poem more deeply. If you like poets like Ocean Vuong, Natalie Diaz and Danez Smith, definitely give this collection a go. Aaiún was the potential to become a big voice in the poetry scene. Since I got an ARC, I believe the version I got wasn’t the final printing version, so I hope the editor manage to fix some parts before printing. But that’s it. Keep this in your radar, I think this is gonna be a big poetry release in 2022.
A beautiful, painful, and brutal exploration of identity, race, and queerness. I found this to be an incredibly fresh and sharp approach to poems that explore lesbian identity and racial inequality. I especially loved the repetitive passages that emphasized the same message for several pages--they were in your face in the best way. I think the comparisons to Ocean Vuong and Natalie Diaz were well earned and accurate, and I highly recommend this collection with attention to trigger warnings.