February 4, 2014

Hi! My Name is Loco and I am a Racist

"The roughest days are those when I'm forced to bear witness to the birth of a racist, to watch as a child's mind is perverted as a matter of course. It's enough to break your heart." ~ pg. 23

Loco is a native New Yorker that currently lives in Japan. His passion for writing is evident. This nonfiction book is a selection of stories and reflections from his childhood through living in Japan. Some parts are originally from his blog Loco in Yokohama.

First, let me confess that the title earned a major mayjah side-eye from me. Who would confess to being a racist in such a blatant, seemingly proud, way? As I began reading, I understood the author's purpose. Unfortunately, Hi, My Name is Loco and I am a Racist was not enough to persuade me to join his readership or fanbase. But it was definitely a welcome experience to read something different than my norm.

It was about halfway through the book that I realized Loco wants his ideas to be challenged. He makes statements to get a reaction and spark dialogue. (Speaking of dialogue, be warned it is a fair amount of profanity used.) Loco asks questions—and answers, which probably explains the nickname—that most people rather not ask aloud. Race is a sensitive issue and sometimes uncomfortable to discuss. Yet Loco argues there is a stigma attached to the label racist and states, "they ain't all bad."

While I respectfully disagree with some of Loco's logic, I admit this controversial memoir is like no other. I believe the author's goal was to bring racism to the forefront instead of continuing to hide it in plain sight. In that sense, it is a success.

DISCLAIMER: This book was received directly from the author for review purposes only. In no way does it influence my review. The opinions I have expressed are my own.

Title: Hi! My Name is Loco and I am a Racist
Author: Baye McNeil
Published: January 2012
Pages: 280
Edition: eBook
Rating: ♥♥♥


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