Harriet's Reviews > Changing My Mind: Occasional Essays

Changing My Mind by Zadie Smith
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's review
Jul 19, 2010

really liked it
Read in July, 2010

This collection of personal essays, reviews, and talks has such beautiful pieces in it, especially the humorous and immensely helpful essay on the process of novel writing ("That Crafty Feeling"), the ardent piece on Hepburn (written just after her death), the brilliant essay about being bilingual (or multilingual) or biracial (or multiracial) ("Speaking in Tongues"), and the absolutely heartrending, sweet, disturbing, and very poignant essay about Smith's father Harry Smith during World War II ("Accidental Hero").

As with most collections, it's uneven -- this is my only reason for giving 4 stars, not 5, when some of the pieces are off the map of "stars" ---- Some of the pieces, especially the more quotidian movie reviews, might have been cut to good effect. But I admire Zady Smith's panache, her supple voice, and her unusual thoughtfulness.

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