Profile Piece: meet Naima Coster
June 12th 2021
The new sweeping epic from author Naima Coster is causing quite a stir among LoveMyReaders. So who is she?
I wrote What’s Mine and Yours because I was interested in the lengths that parents will go to in order to secure good lives for their children. I wanted to explore how our ideas of a good life are shaped by so many things—our losses, generation, prejudices, and dreams. As I wrote about two families brought together by the integration of a local high school, the novel grew into a larger story about education and opportunity, intergenerational conflict, race, mixed families, inheritance, love, and the desire to belong.
I am thrilled to be sharing this book with LoveMyRead subscribers. It's a book that I believe opens up meaningful conversations that are at once political and deeply personal. It's also a book that was very good company to me over the course of the years I devoted to writing it. The places and characters became so alive and dear to me. I hope that they will be good company to you, too.
What type of person do you hope reads your book?
Rachel Khong, one of the authors and early readers of the novel generously said that What's Mine and Yours is a book "for anyone who's ever had a family." I agree.
What's the most unexpected thing you learnt while writing the book?
I learned how to write about a broad cast of characters in a way that felt expansive but also intimate. I'd read many books like this that I adored, and it was a great pleasure to figure out how to do it myself.
What's your favourite first line in literature?
"Ships at a distance have every man's wish on board." --Zora Neale Hurston, Their Eyes Were Watching God
Is there one book you wished you'd written? Why?
I'd love to have written Their Eyes Were Watching God by Zora Neale Hurston which hews so closely to one women's inner life and perspective and yet is also a page turner. It's a rich and deep novel that I've reread many times. But, frankly, I don't think anyone could have written it better than Hurston.
What are you working on next?
I am working on a novel about two lifelong friends who decide to move near one another when they both become pregnant so that they can raise their girls together. They're quickly forced to confront the divergent paths their lives have taken and the consequences of the choices they made when they were young. It's about class mobility, new motherhood, and female friendship.
Intrigued? Get your hands on a copy of Naima's new book with a subscription to LoveMyRead today.
Vicki & The LoveMyRead Team x