Header image with four cats and the text: Pussreboots, a book review nearly every day. Online since 1997
Now 2024 Previous Articles Road Essays Road Reviews Author Black Authors Title Source Age Genre Series Format Inclusivity LGBTA+ Artwork WIP

Recent posts

Month in review

The Bone Houses by Emily Lloyd-Jones
Butterfly Yellow by Thanhha Lai
Cat Got Your Secrets by Julie Chase
Caterpillar Summer by Gillian McDunn
A Charm of Goldfinches and Other Wild Gatherings by Matt Sewell
The Deep by Rivers Solomon
The Dragon Thief by Zetta Elliott
Final Girl by Michelle Schusterman
Giant Days, Volume 11 by John Allison
Gideon Falls, Volume 3: Stations of the Cross by Jeff Lemire
Guts by Raina Telgemeier
Have You Seen a Giraffe Hat? by Irma Joyce
I Wanna Be Where You Are by Kristina Forest
A Kingdom for a Stage by Heidi Heilig
Kneaded to Death by Winnie Archer
Leviathan Wakes by James S.A. Corey
Little & Lion by Brandy Colbert
Milo's World: The Land Under the Lake by Richard Marazano and Christophe Ferreira
Murder by Mocha by Cleo Coyle
Now Entering Addamsville by Francesca Zappia
Operatic by Kyo Maclear and Bryon Eggenschwiler
Our Wayward Fate by Gloria Chao
Over the Moon by Natalie Lloyd
The Phantom Tower by Keir Graff
Posted by John David Anderson
Steel Crow Saga by Paul Krueger
Sunny Side Up by Jennifer L. Holm and Matthew Holm
The Testaments by Margaret Atwood
West with the Night by Beryl Markham
What Rose Forgot by Nevada Barr

It's Monday! What Are You Reading? (November 04)
It's Monday! What Are You Reading? (November 11)
It's Monday! What Are You Reading? (November 18)
It's Monday! What Are You Reading? (November 25)
October 2019 Sources
October 2019 Summary

Road Essays
Road Narrative Update for October 2019

Previous month

Rating System

5 stars: Completely enjoyable or compelling
4 stars: Good but flawed
3 stars: Average
2 stars: OK
1 star: Did not finish

Reading Challenges

Beat the Backlist 2024

Ozathon: 12/2023-01/2025

Canadian Book Challenge: 2023-2024

Chicken Prints
Paintings and Postcards

Privacy policy

This blog does not collect personal data. It doesn't set cookies. Email addresses are used to respond to comments or "contact us" messages and then deleted.

The Deep: 11/22/19

The Deep

The afterword to The Deep by Rivers Solomon explains the artistic lineage of this novel. It began with the fact that pregnant women were tossed overboard from the slave ships to drown. Their story became the inspiration for a song. That in turn became a performance piece for NPR (and the reason why Daveed Diggs, William Hutson, and Jonathan Snipes are included as contributors), and finally was given to Rivers Solomon to write this book.

The conceit throughout is that babies before they are born live in saltwater environments in the womb. What if the sea could reclaim them and give them a life they were denied by those who threw their mothers overboard?

This novel has narratives from four distinct eras: the time of the drowning, the time of the remembering, the time of the escape, and the time of the return. These are my names for the sections. The language and the way commonplace things become revered through the forgetfulness of history reminds me of an underwater version of A Canticle for Leibowitz by Walter Miller Jr (1959).

The Deep despite being almost entirely underwater, fits into the road narrative spectrum.

As the bulk of this novel is on the importance of remembering one's origins, the travelers are those original mothers, or maybe the original babies. Regardless, given their death sentence, the original travelers are marginalized (66).

While one could argue that their destination is the wildlands, aka, the sea, I argue that it's uhoria (CC). Yetu as the unhappy historian is forced to hold all the memories of her people. She spends most of her time reliving the past — the drownings, the rescue by the whales and other sea creatures — the sharks. She is often possessed by these memories. She lives in uhoria.

The route to uhoria, though, is a transformative one. I argue that the sea and wood of the ship combine to form a tkaronto, which is another version of the cornfield (FF).

All together, The Deep is the tale of marginalized travelers traveling through uhoria via the cornfield.

Five stars

Comments (0)

Lab puppy
Email (won't be posted):
Blog URL:

Twitter Tumblr Mastadon Flickr Facebook Facebook Contact me

1997-2024 Sarah Sammis