Zadie Smith – Feel Free
- Arusa Qureshi
- 29 January 2018
A collection of essays addressing important questions with an element of warmth and compassion
Zadie Smith's second collection of essays is a treat for the mind and soul, with her wry and intuitive musings offering nuggets of deeply intellectual yet tender observations about everything from pop culture to politics. In her pieces about music, there's a clear passion that emanates from the pages, perhaps seen most notably in 'The House That Hova Built', an article about Jay-Z, and 'Some Notes on Attunement', a stunning piece concerning Joni Mitchell.
But Smith also succeeds in placing a distinctly personal touch on her political essays, such as 'Fences: A Brexit Diary' and 'North-west London Blues' (the latter revolving around the closure of public libraries), which adds a sense of humanity to issues that are broad and all-encompassing.
As well as being a much-revered novelist, Smith has long proven her talent as an essayist in her work for publications such as the New York Review of Books and Harper's. Feel Free is a handbook to contemporary life and culture, from a mind that stimulates the important questions with an element of warmth and compassion.