UPDATE: There have been some minor developments in this story, and I cleaned up the language for my Freepers. Also, I had forgotten an archive link, so I added it.
Another day, another cancellation in the YA literature world. This time, author Alexandra Duncan has “voluntarily” withdrawn her book, Ember Days, because she failed to “stay in her lane”, basically.
In other words, a white woman wrote about a culture that isn’t hers.
Apparently, white people are not allowed to write about non-white cultures, nor are they to draw inspiration from non-white cultures, lest they be racist.
So, if you’re wondering who Bethany C Morrow is, she’s an author with two books to her name (and a contribution to a vomit-worthy fiction anthology called Take the Mic: Fictional Stories of Everyday Resistance). One is called Mem, which is for adults, and the other, A Song Below Water is her YA debut, and was recently released.
I discovered this story while browsing the YAlit subreddit on Reddit. You can read the ridiculous thread here. It linked to the following story on Publishers Weekly, entitled “Upcoming YA Novel ‘Ember Days’ Canceled by Author’“. Here is the result of the struggle session Alexandra Duncan was forced to endure:
As for the article, there’s the usual stuff, including the author, Alexandra Duncan, insisting that this was her decision and hers alone, but the very end of this article caught my eye:
“We have removed a Twitter screenshot and a reference to an author from this article out of respect for that person’s privacy. We regret any harm caused by its initial inclusion. Due to the personal nature of the comments to this story, the comments have been disabled.”
O RLY? I find that very interesting. So basically, Alexandra Duncan gets to be pilloried as a clueless, racist white woman for the rest of her life while the person who brought this heinous racism to the forefront gets to remain private?
Excuse me, but screw that.
Fear not, dear readers. We all know that the Internet is forever, and as you’ve probably guessed by now, the author of that tweet is none other than Bethany C Morrow.
As you can see in this archive version of the Publishers Weekly article, Bethany C Morrow is the author of the tweet, and even includes a screenshot of the tweet.
I also found another article about the issue, one that hasn’t been censored to protect Morrow’s precious “privacy”. It is that article, from Kirkus Reviews, that I found Morrow’s tweets.
Before I forget, here is an archive version of the Kirkus Reviews page, in case they cuck out and decide to protect Morrow’s “privacy” (i.e. shield her from the consequences of her free speech).
Oh, and I just love how Publishers Weekly disabled comments. You can use the Dissenter bookmarklet or the Dissenter browser to make comments if you want to.
I wonder how long it will take for Kirkus Reviews to change their article on the matter? This has happened several times already – some crybaby leftist, usually a non-white person, whines and cries about a book that’s due to be released, labels it racist for whatever reason and the author is guilt-tripped into canceling it. This happened to Keira Drake, who initially withdrew her book from publication, revised it and then published it about a couple years after it was originally due to be released. Laurie Forest weathered the storm and has now released the third book in her series. Amelie Wen Zhao initially withdrew her book too, but after going over it again, decided to publish it anyway (with some minor revisions). Kosoko Jackson withdrew his book A Place for Wolves and it will probably not see the light of day (he’s got another book in the works).
Those are just the ones I’ve written about previously. There’s more, and I might update this post to include them, once I can get those names pulled together. But it’s a very real thing, and it’s not confined to YA. The latest scandal in the wider adult literature world is the one surrounding Jeanine Cummins and her book American Dirt.
As of this post, Bethany C Morrow has not removed the tweets in question. I’m sure she’s pretty damn proud of them. After all, she’s a lot like Justina Ireland, Ellen Oh and LL McKinney, all non-white women who revel in the power their supposed oppression brings them. Ellen Oh ended up deleting her Twitter account after she got backlash for bullying Amelie Wen Zhao into cancelling her novel. I am sure that this is why Publishers Weekly removed all references to her in their article.
Oh, and while looking Morrow up on Good Reads, I noticed that she has an upcoming book called Little Women, due to be published in 2021. This book, presumably a re-imagining of Louisa May Alcott’s classic novel of the same name, is part of a series called Reclaiming Classics.
I just about went nuclear on that.
First of all, Little Women isn’t Bethany C Morrow’s to reclaim. Let’s make that crystal clear. Louisa May Alcott, the woman she’s basically ripping off of, was white. This person is basically taking a white woman’s work and re-writing it to fit her ridiculous “muh oppression” narrative.
Write your own book! Little Women is NOT yours to claim!
You can see the Good Reads entry here and I’ll even include the full blurb:
“Louisa May Alcott’s Little Women also headlined Settle’s list of classics to reclaim for the series, in part, she said, due to the recent movie adaptation and the attendant conversation “about how it was just the same white narrative that’s already been told so many times. I knew Bethany C. Morrow from Twitter and based on my interactions with her there and her writing career thus far, I thought she would be a great fit to recast Little Women featuring a black family. We talked on the phone for an hour about the lack of diversity within the representation of black people’s experiences during the Civil War in mainstream media. As soon as we hung up, I rushed back to my desk to send an offer to her agent.”
Reclaimed Classics impressed Morrow as “a series for those of us who know and love stories that didn’t reflect our marginalized identities, and who want to correct that.” She decided to set her novel at the Freedmen’s Colony of Roanoke Island in 1863, at a time when some of the residents were emancipated and some were not.
“Every earlier adaptation of Little Women has cast another quartet of white women to tell this supposedly universal story,” the author said. “Worse, it takes place during the Civil War, but doesn’t involve or present any narratives of black American women at the time. Instead we’re repeatedly served a story of northern white Americans, which becomes synonymous with ‘abolitionists’ and ‘good’—and there needn’t be any actual evidence of that, nor any consideration for how a black American from anywhere in the country might think about that characterization. If what makes Little Women a classic is the universal story of love and sisterhood, then my novel will be a welcome adaptation among many.”
The nerve of this woman to bully Alexandra Duncan, a white woman, into cancelling her original novel while she’s got a butchered Black Power version of Little Women in the works! The utter hypocrisy!
But when you’ve got a plum place on the Totem of Oppression, you can pretty much do whatever you want, right?
Meanwhile, Alexandra Duncan can kiss her publishing career goodbye because no matter how many times you apologize, no matter how many times you capitulate to the leftist mob, they will never, ever forgive you. There is no redemption in Lefty Land. They’re not Christians, after all. Forgiveness is for the weak.
Keira Drake is a good example. She reworked her novel to please their sensibilities and they claimed that the revised version was still racist. She has since left Inkyard Press and the second book in her series is kind of up in the air right now.
You never, ever apologize to these hellish, power hungry demons. Sadly, leftists like Alexandra Duncan will never learn.
UPDATE: Okay, so it turns out that Kirkus Reviews did indeed update their article to remove all references to Bethany C Morrow’s tweet. Fortunately, you can read the original by clicking on the archive link I posted up above. I checked her Twitter feed and she still has not removed the tweets, which is fine…I don’t expect her to, and I don’t think she should have to. That being said, if right-wingers have to endure the consequences of their free speech, then so should she.