REVIEW: Open Water

“What is better than believing you are heading towards love?”

What Did I Think?

Open Water is Caleb Azumah Nelson’s highly anticipated debut novel and one that will leave you questioning the concept of love.

In the novel, Caleb BEAUTIFULLY describes what it’s like to experience love for the first time, as well as exploring deeper into what it means to be a Black man in London.

The book is written in such a way that it simply feels like the narrator is writing every thought that comes into their head. Through repetition and stunning metaphors, you really begin to get inside the narrator’s mind and feel how they are feeling.

Although I will never know the brutal truths of what it’s like to be a Black man living in London, I have experienced first-love, and Caleb perfectly sums up the empowering feelings of need, want and even euphoria when you first fall in love with someone.

It took me a while to get used to the writing style but after a 1/4 of the way through, I realised that in order to enjoy this book, you have to slow down and take in every word. An experience that I haven’t had to the opportunity to do for a while and one that I thoroughly enjoyed. 

Open Water

Rating: 4 out of 5.

Publisher: Viking
Published: 2021
No. Pages: 157
Genre: Contemporary Fiction, Romance, Cultural
Trigger Warnings: Depression, broken masculinity, racial prejudice, racial abuse, racism
Links: Goodreads, Amazon, Blackwells 

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