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Dat's Love

"Shimmering with personalities, fine-tuned social observations, and an artists’ eye for evocative detail, these outstanding short stories showcase a Black Welsh writer of remarkable talent."

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LoveReading Says

LoveReading Says

Part of Penguin’s Black Britain, Writing Back series, which is dedicated to celebrating pioneering works that depict Black British experiences, Dat's Love by Leonora Brito presents sixteen impactful short stories from an exceptional Black Welsh writer. As Bernardine Evaristo notes in the introduction (Evaristo curates and introduces the whole Black Britain, Writing Back series), Brito’s stories create “a fictional record of the way things were — imaginatively, wonderfully — as if driven by a social historian’s sensibility.” 

Brito’s writing is also tremendously haunting, sometimes humorous, and always characterful, as we meet a diverse cast of Cardiff characters at home, at work, and at play. We also meet notable Black figures of the 18th-century — aristocrat Dido Elizabeth Belle, and writer, composer and abolitionist Ignatius Sancho —  along with 20th-century fictional characters as they witness historic moments, such as the assassination of JFK and Churchill’s visit to Cardiff in 1955.

From dockyard to drawing room, factory floor to hospital bed, Welsh history, identity, race, and all forms of love are conjured in luminous prose. The writing is taut, fluttery and subtlety explosive as it cuts to the core of the human condition. Special mention must be made of Mother Country, a story that sees a woman perplexed by her new status as a mother. A story that sees the woman come to a state of wonder and love, “entranced” and transformed when her newborn daughter puts out her hand, “with the small white fingers stiff and cold upon the warm, brown flesh of my arm, that starts to thaw — that unfreezes my heart — drip, drip, drip.” Magic.

Read more about the Black Britain, Writing Back series here.

Joanne Owen

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