Danged Black Thing
ISBN TPB 9781955765114
Danged Black Thing is an extraordinary collection of stories about love and migration, gender and class, patriarchy and womanhood, from a remarkable and original voice. Traversing the West and Africa, they celebrate the author’s hybridity with breathtaking sensuousness and lyricism.
Simbiyu wins a scholarship to study in Australia, but cannot leave behind a world of walking barefoot, the orange sun, and his longing for a “once pillow-soft mother.” In his past, darkness rose from the river and something nameless and mystical continues to envelop his life. In “A Taste of Unguja” sweet taarab music, full of want, seeps into a mother’s life on the streets of Melbourne as she evokes the powers of her ancestors to seek vengeance on her cursed ex. In the cyberfunk of “Unlimited Data” Natukunda, a village woman, gives her all for her family in Old Kampala. Other stories explore what happens when the water runs dry—and who pays, capture the devastating effects on women and children of societies in which men hold all the power, and themes of being, belonging, and otherness.
Speculative, realistic, and even mythological, but always imbued with truth, empathy, and Blackness, Danged Black Thing is a literary knockout.
"With poetic prose, an eclectic range of subgenres, and affecting observations on Blackness and womanhood, this collection showcases Bacon at the top of her game." —Publishers Weekly (Starred Review)
“The writing is bold, sensual, breathtakingly good.” —Angela Savage
“Her writing is equal parts fecund earth and fine-cut jewels; her stories juxtapose the scarred and abused with the powerfully magical, the numinous and the deceptively mundane.” —Margo Lanagan
Cover art by Elena Betti