Book Reviews

Book Review: The Vanishing Half by Brit Bennett

The Vanishing Half by Brit Bennett is easily one of the best books I have read this year. The story starts off at a very slow pace, when it introduces the protagonists, twin sisters Stella and Desiree who are light skinned and black. Eventually, the sisters run away from their hometown Mallard and then Stella decides to abandon her twin and goes on to live her life with an entirely new identity as a white woman. The book grapples with the theme of white passing, which is a concept I wasn’t familiar with. It also tackles the themes of colourism, classism, domestic violence, identity issues, imposter syndrome and LGBT issues in a nice little package, without making it seem like it was ticking off the required boxes. The pace of the story picks up following the first few chapters, and after that, it progresses in a way that was difficult to predict as a reader. Which I found to be deeply satisfying. By the end of it, I didn’t want the story to be over. Rating: 9/10.