Island People: The Caribbean and the World

Knopf. Nov. 2016. 496p. notes. ISBN 9780385349765. $28.95; ebk. ISBN 9780385349772. TRAV
Geographer, writer for The New Yorker, Harper's, and the Believer, and visiting scholar at New York University Jelly-Schapiro's book melds vivid travel narrative with rigorous and detailed history as he explores the Caribbean as both a place and an idea and argues for the importance of the region in the making of our modern world. The author describes his travels to nearly every island in the region, describing the people and destinations he visits with clarity and warmth. Braided into his personal account is rich historical knowledge and a focus on the Caribbean musicians, writers, and thinkers who have helped shape world culture.
VERDICT Though the writing is accessible and charming, general interest readers may find the work too academic. However, Caribbean studies scholars and enthusiasts, as well as those traveling to the area who are interested in deepening their understanding of the islands, will rejoice in this lovely book.
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