Love in Color Cover
Title: Love in Color
Author: Heat: Re
Genre(s): Romance Contemporary Historical Fantasy
Tropes: Enemies to Lovers Friends to Lovers Forbidden Love Secret Identity
Tags: sapphic f-f f-m retelling short stories collection mythology
Where to Buy or Read:

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Synopsis from the Creator:

A high-born Nigerian goddess, who has been beaten down and unappreciated by her gregarious lover, longs to be truly seen.

A young businesswoman attempts a great leap in her company, and an even greater one in her love life.

A powerful Ghanaian spokeswoman is forced to decide whether she should uphold her family’s politics or be true to her heart.

In her debut collection, internationally acclaimed writer Bolu Babalola retells the most beautiful love stories from history and mythology with incredible new detail and vivacity. Focusing on the magical folktales of West Africa, Babalola also reimagines Greek myths, ancient legends from the Middle East, and stories from long-erased places.

With an eye towards decolonizing tropes inherent in our favorite tales of love, Babalola has created captivating stories that traverse across perspectives, continents, and genres.

Love in Color is a celebration of romance in all its many splendid forms.

Review: Love in Color, by Bolu Babalola

[fa icon="calendar"] Apr 26, 2021 11:50:36 AM / by Suzanne

It's not often that short stories are as deeply romantic and emotionally affecting as those in Love in Color. Telling a complete story with nuanced characterization and satisfying development of a romantic arc is incredibly difficult to pull off in just a few pages. Bolu Babalola does this masterfully. If you enjoy history and myths and perhaps want a happier ending for some of the stories, this book is for you.

Babalola presents several contemporary retellings of classic stories like those of Pyramus and Thisbe, Nefertiti and Osun. She brings us around the world, through time and magic systems, and introduces us to characters who love and are loved equally in turn. She also wrote some original stories and those are just as lovely. As with all collections, some stories work better than others, but I was enjoying myself so much that I didn't care.

I enjoyed this audiobook a lot. There are four narrators, two of whom narrate all stories but the last. These stories take place around the world, meaning that Ajjaz Awad and Nneka Okoye employed a variety of accents, smoothly transitioning between characters and cultures. They adeptly captured the range of emotions and particularly the yearning of many characters. Very well done.

The last story, which has stayed with me these many days since I finished reading, is the love story of the author's parents. She and her mother, Olukemi Babalola, read it together in alternating POVs and it made me smile. Have you ever sat listening to an audiobook and grinning? That was me.

Alyssa Cole wrote a piece about Love in Color for the New York Times and if you want a much better reflection on these stories and the power within, I urge you to read it.

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I received a digital audiobook from the publisher for review. I also won a print copy on Goodreads before I knew I was getting audio access, so I sent my paper copy off to another reviewer.

If you'd like to purchase a copy of this book, please consider using one of these links to support the site: Amazon, Barnes & Noble, Bookshop, Kobo, Libro.fm

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Content Warnings: violence, mention of sexual assault, infidelity

Topics: review