Ingrid Norton gave a rave review to The Year Before The Flood, by Ned Sublette, who I’ve heard is an interesting writer, and I think I actually tried to get in touch with at some point. Neither the review nor the book is new, but I hadn’t heard of the book till recently and was just a) curious if any of you had a take, and b) figured if you didn’t know about it, you might want to!
Here’s a bit of the review:
The Year Before the Flood narrates Sublette’s year in New Orleans, interweaving anecdotes, historical observation, a meditation on race relations, crime, and urban decay, and a breath-taking account of the city’s music, from jazz to hip-hop. Sublette foregrounds the story with his early childhood in segregated Natchitoches, Louisiana, rightly placing his account of New Orleans in the larger context of the South’s racial history. The result is a deeply personal, idiosyncratic book which contains some of the best writing about New Orleans I’ve ever read.