Maddy’s Review of An Autobiography of Skin
Publication date: 28 February 2023
Stars: 4 out of 5
*Disclaimer: Thank you Pantheon for sending me a copy of An Autobiography of Skin to read and review.
Heat. Fire. Rain so blue. The blackness. The color of our hue. A magisterial, intimate look at Black womanhood: the grief that is carried within the body and the bonds of love that grant strength. A middle-aged woman feeds slots at a secret, back-room parlor. A new mother descends into a devastating postpartum depression, wracked with the fear that she is unable to protect her children. A daughter returns home to join the other women in her family waging spiritual combat with the ghosts of their past.
An Autobiography of Skin is a dazzling and masterful portrait of interconnected generations in the South from a singular new voice, offering a raw and tender view into the interior lives of Black women. It is at once a powerful look at how experiences are carried inside the body, inside the flesh and skin, and a joyous testament to how healing can be found within–in love, mercy, gratitude, and freedom.
My Review of An Autobiography of Skin
The book follows three Black women, and explores their friendships, family, love, struggles, joy, and their lives overall. The main characters are Nettie, Maya, and Katinah. Maya was my favorite character to follow, but I love all of them. The book was broken up into three parts, each concentrating on one of the main characters. I am not a Black woman, but the characters were relatable in some ways for me. Carr writes her characters so beautifully, they are so real and relatable. I do think the book could have been longer. I wanted more time with some of the characters, to get to know them more.
The writing style is beautiful. Lakiesha Carr is an amazing author, and I can’t wait to read another book of hers. Definitely an auto-read author. You will definitely feel a lot while reading this. Look up triggers before reading this book. We get glimpses into the lives of these Black women and see the struggles they go through. There are some lighter and happy moments, but this is not a light read. The book talks about mental health, drug abuse, family, alcoholism, abuse, racism, sexism, and emotional healing. If you are in the right mental health space to read a more difficult book you should definitely pick this up. This is not a light read, but you will learn a lot and connect with some amazing people.