In Time of Need [Kindle edition & paperback]

Book review
Author: Shakirah Bourne
Shakirah Bourne
Every now and again you come across a new writer and wish to download as much of their work as you can – and offer them as great suggested reads to friends and family. The author here is the Barbadian/Caribbean writer Shakirah Bourne. Her marvellous collection of short stories is so vivid with its imagination and feeling that you’ll be in the stories with the characters, as soon as you begin reading.

The book blurb says:

In Time of Need


A collection of award-winning Barbadian stories that showcase the controversial and often hidden aspects of the supposed Caribbean paradise. The themes of love and relationships, domestic and emotional abuse, politics in the rum shop, sex tourism and human trafficking and more, are narrated in a satirical and humorous style, often through the voices of innocent and naïve characters.


‘Getting Marry’ sets the scene for the whole book. As you meet the reality of living day by day to Barbados, you are also transplanted to the beaches, the sand and the friendly people who welcome you to their island.

My only complaint was the necessity to stop reading after 15 stories; I would have enjoyed so many more, but with the teaser for ‘Getting Back at Jack Taylor,‘ Shakirah Bourne leaves me wanting to read more.

I wouldn’t usually re-read a book for some months or even years, but I believe I’ll start this collection again, quite soon.

This is one of those rare occasions I would have been pleased to offer six stars for an Amazon review.

I doubt I’ll be allowing this copy far from my bookshelf so you’ll have to buy your own. The book is available at these websites below or direct from the author
Amazon UK  Amazon USA
When you’ve finished reading your copy, I’ll be pleased to read your views about ‘In Time of Need.

The End of School Text Books in Barbados?

E-reader or tablet computer? – That is the question on the tips of the educators across Barbados today.

By the beginning of the school year in September 2014, all 22 secondary schools, which would normally issue around two dozen textbooks to each child, will issue an e-reader with all of the necessary textbooks on the unit. Presuming that each of the textbooks can be purchased less expensively than buying the printed variety, the ongoing saving should be significant, especially in a country that provides all of its education for free.

E-readers cost a lot less than they used to, so by purchasing this many at once, they should be able to acquire them at a good price.

There will be a worry that e-readers might get stolen from the students, but if every student is loaned an e-reader from their school, there isn’t any point in trying to steal a unit from one person to sell to another. There will, however, become a question of responsibility and if a student loses their e-reader, will they be expected to replace it, especially at times of recession? Schools may need to pay for insurance to cover the e-readers.

Some people will argue that a tablet computer would be much more useful for all of the children as they would be able to surf the Internet as part of their educational needs and the technology can be arranged in such a way that certain websites can be blocked so they don’t venture into the wrong areas while surfing. The current cost may be prohibitive.

The 100+ primary schools will be watching the situation very closely, because they will demand a similar situation for their students, as soon as possible.

The Ministry of Education should be applauded for this initiative, making Barbados’ schools rank high in its technological exploits, which helps students plan for a computer literate future.