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Summary

How do you find hope and even joy in a world that is racist, sexist and facing climate crisis? How do you prepare your children for it, but also fill them with all the boundlessness and eccentricity that they deserve and that life has to offer?

In Brown Baby, Nikesh Shukla explores themes of racism, feminism, parenting and our shifting ideas of home. This memoir, by turns heart-wrenching, hilariously funny and intensely relatable, is dedicated to the author’s two young daughters and serves as an act of remembrance to the grandmother they never had a chance to meet. Through love, grief, food and fatherhood, Shukla shows how it’s possible to believe in hope.

This audiobook contains exclusive extracts from the Brown Baby podcast, including interviews with guests such as Nadiya Hussein, Jay Sean and Kit de Waal. 

©2020 Nikesh Shukla (P)2020 Macmillan Publishers International Ltd

Critic reviews

"Brown Baby is a beautifully intimate and soul-searching memoir. It speaks to the heart and the mind and bears witness to our turbulent times." (Bernardine Evaristo)

"A wise and wonderful book from the hugely talented Nikesh Shukla. Written for his daughters, inspired by his mother whom they never got to meet, this love letter to his brown babies encompasses fatherhood, feminism, racial politics, growing up and being a grown up, with tenderness, depth and humour." (Meera Syal)

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A fantastic book

This is a brilliant book, whether you are a parent or not, a brown person or not - it is well written and speaks truth.

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Biography/father's letter to his daughter

Shukla makes this both a beautiful letter to his eldest daughter, telling her truths about her family, father and growing self, as well as making this a biography and look at what it means to be 'Brown' in today's Britain.

As a parent, I was touched at his observations of his baby, his little girl, his curious daughter asking questions of the world and pushing for what she sees to be the 'right' way to be. Her black-and-white and often reactive worldview is sometimes sad (girls are nurses not doctors, there aren't brown faces like hers in books) and contrasts poignantly with the life lessons her dad tries to teach her.

It's an ode to parenting, to the beauty of childhood. To mothers. To family. While also being firmly about race and sexual equality and raising a child (of any race) in a confusing bombardment of stereotypes and perceived perfections.

Shukla is an author I've already read and admired, and I loved the style used here for the book. It isn't quite sequential but there is logic to the structure, I loved hearing him to talk his daughter. And opening up to readers at the same time about his ongoing grief for his mother, his feelings about the father that 'raised' him so different to himself, his own experiences as a parent.

For readers of any race and gender, for parents and non-parents, this is a provocative and stimulating autobiography-observation. Himesh Patel narrates this wonderfully, encapsulating the bittersweet and the loving.

With thanks to Nudge Books for providing a sample Audible copy.

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hmmmm

platitudes presented as epigrams again I'm afraid. I wouldn't bother if i were you. I'm glad he wrote it but regret reading it.