When Emira is apprehended at a supermarket for ‘kidnapping’ the white child she’s actually babysitting, it sets off an explosive chain of events. Her employer Alix, a feminist blogger with a ‘personal brand’ and the best of intentions, resolves to make things right.
But Emira herself is aimless, broke and wary of Alix’s desire to help. When she meets someone from Alix’s past, the two women find themselves on a crash course that will upend everything they think they know – about themselves, each other, and the messy dynamics of privilege.
Disclaimer: I received an eARC of the book from Bloomsbury India in exchange for an honest review! However, the thoughts, opinions expressed in the review are entirely my own!
Such a Fun Age is a subtle satirical look at the white privilege of thinking that they are “woke” and absolutely fine with racial differences and how they can show EXACTLY that to the whole world.
Alix Chamberlain is a successful lifestyle blogger and a mom of two – while she has had to make changes that has had an effect on her career; where she was reaching heights a successful feminist voice – she hires Emira, a young college graduate as a part time babysitter for her older daughter!
Emira, on the other hand, the first in her family to go to college; doesn’t really know EXACTLY what she wants to do with her life; she loves babysitting for Alix; mostly because she loves Briar, Alix’s eldest daughter, but also because she can’t seem to figure EXACTLY what interests her enough to pursue as a career.
Such a Fun Age opens to Emira being called in to babysit Briar on an emergency; an emergency that she responds to, even though she may not have been “appropriately” dressed for a babysitting gig (meaning: she was in an clubbing outfit and yes, this makes a whole lot of difference to how the incident plays out!), so she takes young Briar to a supermarket just to pass time; which is when she is accosted by another shopper and the security guard regarding her veracity as Briar’s nanny since she is black and Briar is, well not.
This incident or rather confrontation sets the whole tone for the book itself – though mostly because it shows the actual privilege of a white person to believe that an act of racism is somehow a reflection or rather an attack on them personally; rather than the victim, Emira here, herself.
Such a Fun Age is a satirical commentary on white privilege at it is roots – how white people tend to go to extremes when trying to make the society, the minorities and even themselves believe that they aren’t actually part of a system that is flawed at its core – while also taking into account the saviour complex that white people tend to have with regards to minorities and how they absolutely tend to believe themselves to be the authority for what is the best for the minorities.
I enjoyed reading the book; though I do wish a whole lot of time would have been given to the character growth of Emira as an individual – while I understood the cross roads that Emira stood upon; the indecision regarding her own life, she ends up being a spectator of her own life; which I understand was the actual point of the book; yet still; I would have needed a whole lot more for Emira than what she was given at the end.