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Gentrifier: A Memoir

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Taking on the thorny ethics of owning and selling property as a white woman in a majority Black city and a majority Bangladeshi neighborhood with both intelligence and humor, this memoir brings a new perspective to a Detroit that finds itself perpetually on the brink of revitalization. In 2016, a Detroit arts organization grants writer and artist Anne Elizabeth Moore a Taking on the thorny ethics of owning and selling property as a white woman in a majority Black city and a majority Bangladeshi neighborhood with both intelligence and humor, this memoir brings a new perspective to a Detroit that finds itself perpetually on the brink of revitalization. In 2016, a Detroit arts organization grants writer and artist Anne Elizabeth Moore a free house--a room of her own, à la Virginia Woolf--in Detroit's majority-Bangladeshi "Banglatown." Accompanied by her cats, Moore moves to the bungalow in her new city where she gardens, befriends the neighborhood youth, and grows to intimately understand civic collapse and community solidarity. When the troubled history of her prize house comes to light, Moore finds her life destabilized by the aftershocks of the housing crisis and governmental corruption. This is also a memoir of art, gender, work, and survival. Moore writes into the gaps of Woolf's declaration that "a woman must have money and a room of one's own if she is to write"; what if this woman were queer and living with chronic illness, as Moore is, or a South Asian immigrant, like Moore's neighbors? And what if her primary coping mechanism was jokes? Part investigation, part comedy of a vexing city, and part love letter to girlhood, Gentrifier examines capitalism, property ownership, and whiteness, asking if we can ever really win when violence and profit are inextricably linked with victory.


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Taking on the thorny ethics of owning and selling property as a white woman in a majority Black city and a majority Bangladeshi neighborhood with both intelligence and humor, this memoir brings a new perspective to a Detroit that finds itself perpetually on the brink of revitalization. In 2016, a Detroit arts organization grants writer and artist Anne Elizabeth Moore a Taking on the thorny ethics of owning and selling property as a white woman in a majority Black city and a majority Bangladeshi neighborhood with both intelligence and humor, this memoir brings a new perspective to a Detroit that finds itself perpetually on the brink of revitalization. In 2016, a Detroit arts organization grants writer and artist Anne Elizabeth Moore a free house--a room of her own, à la Virginia Woolf--in Detroit's majority-Bangladeshi "Banglatown." Accompanied by her cats, Moore moves to the bungalow in her new city where she gardens, befriends the neighborhood youth, and grows to intimately understand civic collapse and community solidarity. When the troubled history of her prize house comes to light, Moore finds her life destabilized by the aftershocks of the housing crisis and governmental corruption. This is also a memoir of art, gender, work, and survival. Moore writes into the gaps of Woolf's declaration that "a woman must have money and a room of one's own if she is to write"; what if this woman were queer and living with chronic illness, as Moore is, or a South Asian immigrant, like Moore's neighbors? And what if her primary coping mechanism was jokes? Part investigation, part comedy of a vexing city, and part love letter to girlhood, Gentrifier examines capitalism, property ownership, and whiteness, asking if we can ever really win when violence and profit are inextricably linked with victory.

30 review for Gentrifier: A Memoir

  1. 5 out of 5

    Nancy

    Houses in Detroit were being given away to writers! I remember the articles in the Detroit Free Press. On the surface, Write a House sounded like a great idea. All those empty houses in the city, why not? “It’s like a writer-in-residence program…only in this case we’re actually giving the writer the residence, forever,” an article in Publisher’s Weekly noted. The writers were given two years rent-free then handed the deed. All they had to do was to “engage with the literary community of Detroit, Houses in Detroit were being given away to writers! I remember the articles in the Detroit Free Press. On the surface, Write a House sounded like a great idea. All those empty houses in the city, why not? “It’s like a writer-in-residence program…only in this case we’re actually giving the writer the residence, forever,” an article in Publisher’s Weekly noted. The writers were given two years rent-free then handed the deed. All they had to do was to “engage with the literary community of Detroit,” live in the house 75% of the time, and pay insurance and taxes. For Anne Elizabeth Moore, it meant a place of her own where she could settle down after years of traveling across the world. But the reality fell short of the ideal. Out of her experience arose a book about her experience winning a house, adapting to Banglatown, discovering Detroit’s ‘come back’ was more hype than truth, and how the city balances their budget by selling the homes of people who owed back taxes. It is not a pretty story, and yet Moore’s stories spurred plenty of laughs and included some heart-warming scenes. The memoir is episodic, but I liked the mix. Light hearted stories about her cats and the hospitality of her Bengali neighbors intersperse the more serious and disturbing narratives. My favorite scenes were Moore’s interactions with the girls who lived across the street. The girls gave her insight into their lives as Moore expanded their understanding of the world. Home ownership is costly. Moore’s ‘free house’ put her nearly $30,000 in debt, and when she decided to sell discovered the name on the deed was not her own. I had read others on the Detroit foreclosure crisis, how occupied homes are ceased for back taxes, sometimes over a few hundred dollars, then sold at auction, and then resold again. Everyone making a profit off of another’s catastrophe, forcing people out of their family homes….and homeless. “Michigan is one of only twelve states that allows counties to profit from the sale of property seized in tax foreclosures,” Moore states. And, Detroit has one of the highest property tax rates in America. Of course, the population decline and resulting empty lots means lower income from property taxes, and the city had to raise the funds somehow….hence, selling off seized properties for a profit. She shares the hard numbers: a $22.5 million budget shortfall in 2014 was offset by the seizure and sale of homes! Moore discovered that her house had been illegally seized and sold for a profit. Moore loved her neighbors, but she did not love Detroit. It is not a positive portrait of the city. One that is, in some ways, well deserved.

  2. 4 out of 5

    Kate

    This book stood out to me because I haven’t seen many memoirs written about the feelings and emotions that come along with playing a part in gentrification. Moore is a white, female, writer who was gifted a house in Detroit by an association “giving away free houses” to authors who needed a good place to live especially while they worked on their writing. She tells about her experience in this process more through moments and less of a timeline which I enjoyed. She focused on facts as much as sh This book stood out to me because I haven’t seen many memoirs written about the feelings and emotions that come along with playing a part in gentrification. Moore is a white, female, writer who was gifted a house in Detroit by an association “giving away free houses” to authors who needed a good place to live especially while they worked on their writing. She tells about her experience in this process more through moments and less of a timeline which I enjoyed. She focused on facts as much as she focused on feelings and I think this really kept me interested in this story. She was good at recognizing that things, people, and actions can be good and bad at the same time which I think is super genuine. My favorite part was hearing about the conversations she would have with her neighbors and how these interactions Turned into full blown relationships.

  3. 4 out of 5

    Karen

    One of the best types of books is the kind you read really quickly and then tell yourself that you need to re-read it, this time slowly. The book is hilarious and told in short vignettes, which makes it an easy read, but there is so much in it - gentrification of course, housing policy, racism, immigration, the concept of work. I had not heard of this author before and want to go look up her other books.

  4. 4 out of 5

    Leslie Lindsay

    A timely and gorgeous exploration of home, culture, community, immigration, and so much more in this memoir of art, gender, work, and survival. Looking for your next great read? How about author interviews, discussion questions, insights, writing prompts/inspiration, book lists, and more? Join me every week at www.leslielindsay.com|Always with a Book I admit to falling in love with this book based on the eye-catching cover, the title alone, and of course, the fact that it is about a writer in a A timely and gorgeous exploration of home, culture, community, immigration, and so much more in this memoir of art, gender, work, and survival. Looking for your next great read? How about author interviews, discussion questions, insights, writing prompts/inspiration, book lists, and more? Join me every week at www.leslielindsay.com|Always with a Book I admit to falling in love with this book based on the eye-catching cover, the title alone, and of course, the fact that it is about a writer in a house. I mean, it hits on so many of my passions. But the love for this book isn't just superficial. I truly loved the story. GENTRIFIER: A Memoir by Anne Elizabeth Moore (Catapult, October 19 2021) is about a queer woman writer who is 'gifted' a house. The catch: you must live in Detroit for two years. And one might wonder: what's wrong with Detroit? Growing up in St. Louis, I had a friend move away to the suburbs of Detroit. It wasn't a big deal. But it was the *suburbs.* And the qualifier: 'when I was growing up,' [read: a long time ago]. It's true, at it's height, Detroit, like St. Louis, even, was once a very hoppin' cool place. Factories were pumping out cars. It was lively and a vital to our economy. And then...what happened? I'm not exactly sure. Jobs were moved overseas because labor was cheaper. Company housing was boarded. Factories shuttered. Schools became derelict. The population grew more illiterate. It became less diversified. Then the housing crisis of 2008 and more recently, the coronavirus pandemic. GENTRIFIER isn't *just* about that. It's about one writer woman's connection to the house, the community, her work, and also briefly, her autoimmune disease and her cats. It is written in a spry, darkly humorous investigation, recollecting conversations and tidbits of her time at the Detroit house. GENTRIFIER is a quick read, but it's one of those books you might fly through initially, but hang on to it, because you'll want to go back and savor. The book is divided into sections: The House, The Neighborhood, The City, The Work...and so forth, and each section is anchored by a Virginia Woolf quote, which I quite enjoyed, having not really committed any of them to memory, other than the one about a woman who wants to write must have a room of her own. Sections are short and snappy and do not flow in a chronological manner but sort of spiral and circle back. I personally really like this style, it helps me see the bigger picture and piece together themes and motifs, but that's just the kind of reader/writer I tend to be. Not everyone will appreciate this. My favorite pieces of the story are those involving the conversations the author had with her neighbors and how those neighbors offered deep insights from unique vantage points (almost all were Bangladeshi/women). But things do end with a bit of a twist and that became a bit of the investigative piece I am alluding to, but also, maybe the investigation was more personal and rooted in art. I was reminded, in part, of the memoir, TENEMENTAL by Vikki Warner meets Erica Bauermeister's HOUSE LESSONS. For all my reviews, including author interviews, please see: www.leslielindsay.com|Always with a Book. Special thanks to the author and publisher for this review copy. All thoughts are my own.

  5. 5 out of 5

    Erin

    Gentrifier - The title intrigued me. As a white woman who has spent the past ~15 years moving around the US, almost always living in gentrifying neighborhoods - I felt compelled to read this memoir. The author is given a free home in Detroit as part of a program for artists. The story details the varied (positive & negative) experiences she has when moving into a home in a primarily Bengali neighborhood during an extremely dark time in Detroit's history. Some include: dealing with utterly failing Gentrifier - The title intrigued me. As a white woman who has spent the past ~15 years moving around the US, almost always living in gentrifying neighborhoods - I felt compelled to read this memoir. The author is given a free home in Detroit as part of a program for artists. The story details the varied (positive & negative) experiences she has when moving into a home in a primarily Bengali neighborhood during an extremely dark time in Detroit's history. Some include: dealing with utterly failing government unable to provide even basic services to its residents (utilities, schools, legal support, etc) to racism within her new community, to various gender stereotypes and even the restrictions put on her as the winner of this free home. I found the story itself interesting - however I personally found the writing hard to follow. It is written in short bits and jumps around various topics and timelines. Almost as if it is a journal of scattered thoughts. Some may find this appealing/endearing - however for me it was difficult to follow. Overall I would recommend this as a read to those that want to learn a bit more about an immigrant communities perspectives as well as what it was like to live in Detroit during its darkest days. Thank you to NetGalley & the publisher for my gifted advance copy..

  6. 4 out of 5

    Pamela

    I learned so much! Also, I kept wondering how the author would end this book, and it ended beautifully, powerfully. Well done.

  7. 5 out of 5

    Stephanie Carlson

    **This book was provided to me by the publisher via NetGalley in exchange for a fair and honest review.** A highly engaging and readable memoir. Told in short, digestible vignettes, Gentrifier recounts the experience of the author after being “gifted” a “free” house in an underserved neighborhood in Detroit. Both Moore’s personal experience and the history of the house itself turn out to be more complicated, particularly within the broader American and Detroit-centric history of race, class, and **This book was provided to me by the publisher via NetGalley in exchange for a fair and honest review.** A highly engaging and readable memoir. Told in short, digestible vignettes, Gentrifier recounts the experience of the author after being “gifted” a “free” house in an underserved neighborhood in Detroit. Both Moore’s personal experience and the history of the house itself turn out to be more complicated, particularly within the broader American and Detroit-centric history of race, class, and power, than initially meets the eye. What I particularly like about the memoir is that it knows when to pull back. My favorite vignettes concern the children in Moore’s neighborhood, particularly Nishat and Sadia, and the friendship Moore forms with them. A lesser writer would take this opportunity to reflect upon her own contributions to the girls’ lives; instead, Moore lets the girls speak through their own words and actions, and does away with any self-indulgent or self-centering reflection. She peppers in historical data when necessary, but this book isn’t a history of redlining or immigration or gentrification on a large scale—merely one woman’s, and “her” house’s, rather conflicted roles within it.

  8. 4 out of 5

    Lane

    Did not go deep enough. Her truthout cartoons on the foreclosure, blight and water crisis in Detroit are great. Unfortunately she didn't apply her own reporting rigor to her own life. Her bemoaning of Detroiters aversion to reading is particularly cringe. Did not go deep enough. Her truthout cartoons on the foreclosure, blight and water crisis in Detroit are great. Unfortunately she didn't apply her own reporting rigor to her own life. Her bemoaning of Detroiters aversion to reading is particularly cringe.

  9. 5 out of 5

    Larissa Goalder

    this book was sooooo interesting, well written, and thought provoking! I vaguely remember hearing about free houses in Detroit but didn't know anything else about that program or actually Detroit. I loved the writing style; the way everything would loop together instead of being written linearly. I personally like that style of writing and loved the short vignettes. My favorite parts where about the teen girls she met and watching them grow up with her. I liked Moore's realization she is part of this book was sooooo interesting, well written, and thought provoking! I vaguely remember hearing about free houses in Detroit but didn't know anything else about that program or actually Detroit. I loved the writing style; the way everything would loop together instead of being written linearly. I personally like that style of writing and loved the short vignettes. My favorite parts where about the teen girls she met and watching them grow up with her. I liked Moore's realization she is part of the problem of gentrification and where she went from there and I loved the ending.

  10. 5 out of 5

    Janilyn Kocher

    Detroit, Michigan has fallen on hard times in the 21st century. The Motor City had a plethora of decrepit houses they were trying to rehab and then “give” away. Moore applied for one of those free houses and lived in it for two years. Those experiences are the basis for her her book. Of course, nothin this ever free as she finds out and chapters are devoted to her legal battles to gain title to the house. The parts I was most interested in were her neighbors. A delightful cast of characters made Detroit, Michigan has fallen on hard times in the 21st century. The Motor City had a plethora of decrepit houses they were trying to rehab and then “give” away. Moore applied for one of those free houses and lived in it for two years. Those experiences are the basis for her her book. Of course, nothin this ever free as she finds out and chapters are devoted to her legal battles to gain title to the house. The parts I was most interested in were her neighbors. A delightful cast of characters made the book come alive. It’s an interesting story of urban renewal and hope for a once declining area. Thanks to Catapult and NetGalley for the early read.

  11. 4 out of 5

    Susan

    This was sort of written like a stream of consciousness. One paragraph would be about cleaning out the backyard of mulberry trees and the next about shopping for groceries and men asking her out. It doesn't sound that bad when I write it but it was oftentimes so jarring that I kept thinking I skipped a page. Interestingly, the only people in the neighborhood she mentions by name, and those she seems to be the closest to, are the children. Some teens, some younger. All the parents are referred to This was sort of written like a stream of consciousness. One paragraph would be about cleaning out the backyard of mulberry trees and the next about shopping for groceries and men asking her out. It doesn't sound that bad when I write it but it was oftentimes so jarring that I kept thinking I skipped a page. Interestingly, the only people in the neighborhood she mentions by name, and those she seems to be the closest to, are the children. Some teens, some younger. All the parents are referred to as "Sadia's" mother, etc. The neighbors seemed like the most interesting part of the entire story and i would have liked to learn more about them and less about the author's autoimmune disorders.

  12. 4 out of 5

    Dave Hogg

    Brilliant and painful For someone who only lived in Detroit for a couple years, Anne has done an amazing of capturing the real Detroit. It isn't the hellhole of ruin porn and it isn't the Great American Renaissance. It is a place that needs to be treated as Anne treats it. I'm glad she lived in Detroit. I'm glad she doesn't have to live here anymore. Brilliant and painful For someone who only lived in Detroit for a couple years, Anne has done an amazing of capturing the real Detroit. It isn't the hellhole of ruin porn and it isn't the Great American Renaissance. It is a place that needs to be treated as Anne treats it. I'm glad she lived in Detroit. I'm glad she doesn't have to live here anymore.

  13. 5 out of 5

    Melanie

    Provocative memoir that describes the author’s cultural positioning and complicity in gentrification (among other things) in very genuine reflective vignettes. At first the short pieces seemed choppy/disjointed, but became more conversational as I got used to Moore’s writing style. Really compelling telling of a complicated story!

  14. 5 out of 5

    Sarah Boon

    This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here. A great meditation on community, home, and place by Anne Moore. Tackles the complicated threads behind "winning" a fixed up house in Detroit and the responsibilities engendered by that "win," with the strangeness of being set down in the middle of a primarily southeast Asian community. Written in fragments, Moore's story shows that being given a house never happens without many strings attached. A great meditation on community, home, and place by Anne Moore. Tackles the complicated threads behind "winning" a fixed up house in Detroit and the responsibilities engendered by that "win," with the strangeness of being set down in the middle of a primarily southeast Asian community. Written in fragments, Moore's story shows that being given a house never happens without many strings attached.

  15. 4 out of 5

    Trudy

    Anyone who has ever lived in Detroit, or are thinking of moving there should read this book! It is well worth your time. Be aware, though, it will be an eye-opening experience, and could be depressing if Detroit was once your home. I'd advise having the most cheerful book you can find lined up to clear your mental palate afterward. It's a memoir by a writer from Chicago and points west who was given the house by a program to support struggling authors by giving them a free place to work. Unfortu Anyone who has ever lived in Detroit, or are thinking of moving there should read this book! It is well worth your time. Be aware, though, it will be an eye-opening experience, and could be depressing if Detroit was once your home. I'd advise having the most cheerful book you can find lined up to clear your mental palate afterward. It's a memoir by a writer from Chicago and points west who was given the house by a program to support struggling authors by giving them a free place to work. Unfortunately, neither the program nor the house were all they were advertised to be. The author was fortunate to land in an East side Bengali community, where her neighbors welcomed her, and did what they could to help her make the best of a bad situation. I'm a former Detroiter. My husband and I were both born there. Our family left Northwest Detroit in 1986 for Arizona. Though we hear some things from friends who either stayed in the city itself or only went as far as the suburbs, I had no idea it had gotten as bad as it is. While I don't necessarily agree with all of the author's political views, I can see Ms. Moore did her best to draw a clear picture and avoid exaggeration. I'm not sure I could be as evenhanded about my own experience of living in the city. NOTE: Unless you bought the book from Amazon, you won't be allowed to review it there. Here's what they say: "Amazon has noticed unusual reviewing activity on this product. Due to this activity, we have limited this product to verified purchase reviews."

  16. 5 out of 5

    Keva

    Sign me up to read everything that Anne Elizabeth Moore has written! I found this body of work so incredibly easy to read, but full of hard to accept aspects of privilege. Found it to be an incredible follow up to Wayward by Dana Spiotta.

  17. 4 out of 5

    Jo Anne

    Writer and activist Anne Elizabeth Moore is offered a free house in Detroit and finds out that you get what you pay for. The book is a short read, in small paragraphs under headings such as THE HOUSE, THE NEIGHBORHOOD, THE DATE. Each chapter starts with a quote from Virginia Woolf's A Room of One's Own. I liked this book and the author. Considering what the bureaucrats of Detroit did to her (and the other people of Detroit) this book could have been vicious, but she was kind. It's sad to see how te Writer and activist Anne Elizabeth Moore is offered a free house in Detroit and finds out that you get what you pay for. The book is a short read, in small paragraphs under headings such as THE HOUSE, THE NEIGHBORHOOD, THE DATE. Each chapter starts with a quote from Virginia Woolf's A Room of One's Own. I liked this book and the author. Considering what the bureaucrats of Detroit did to her (and the other people of Detroit) this book could have been vicious, but she was kind. It's sad to see how terrible the city of Detroit is, still, and it makes me wonder, yet again, how this could happen in America? But enough of that. Moore gets a house in the middle of Detroit's Bengali neighborhood. She makes friends and learns a lot about the people and I'm almost jealous of her living in the middle of a different culture. I say almost because the house is crappy and the city does nothing to help her when she gets a high water bill and the roof falls apart. I think she handles it better than I would. I will definitely read more of her work.

  18. 5 out of 5

    Lori

    Highly recommend especially for those of us living near Detroit.

  19. 4 out of 5

    Lauren

    This was a five star book for me. But I’m going to be honest: I am really sick of authors using the deaths or suffering of cats as devices in their novels and memoirs. First, it doesn’t add anything to the book. It doesn’t. Second, it’s upsetting to people. It one of my biggest triggers when reading books or watching movies/tv. Never has a cat’s death or detailed demise actually mattered in the context of the show/movie/book. And I’ve seen/read plenty. And it was brought up more than once in GEN This was a five star book for me. But I’m going to be honest: I am really sick of authors using the deaths or suffering of cats as devices in their novels and memoirs. First, it doesn’t add anything to the book. It doesn’t. Second, it’s upsetting to people. It one of my biggest triggers when reading books or watching movies/tv. Never has a cat’s death or detailed demise actually mattered in the context of the show/movie/book. And I’ve seen/read plenty. And it was brought up more than once in GENTRIFIER. It was unnecessary and ruined the overall reading experience for me. Because the book was great. I liked Anne’s insights and experiences. Her writing is blunt and to the point. The entire memoir is broken up into section and then written in small vignettes. It’s a quick read but packed with information and things I would never had thought of in conjunction with Detroit historically and contemporarily. It was fascinating and funny and eye opening.

  20. 5 out of 5

    Kate M

    3.5 or 3.75 stars This was different from what I expected, which I guess in retrospect was something more liner and more like a “typical” memoir. Lovely writing. Brilliant insights. Humor. Cats. It had it all. A section from when her cat, Thurber, is put to sleep: “She gives him a sedative, and I tell him l love him, then she gives him another sedative, more of it, to end his life. Every single moment is so painful that there is no worst time, no moment that my grief is deepened or relieved, no cha 3.5 or 3.75 stars This was different from what I expected, which I guess in retrospect was something more liner and more like a “typical” memoir. Lovely writing. Brilliant insights. Humor. Cats. It had it all. A section from when her cat, Thurber, is put to sleep: “She gives him a sedative, and I tell him l love him, then she gives him another sedative, more of it, to end his life. Every single moment is so painful that there is no worst time, no moment that my grief is deepened or relieved, no change whatsoever. When the vet takes his body away for cremation, I am alone…and grieving every harsh word I uttered to Thurber in our twenty three years together, reliving every ridiculous moment, cherishing every loving comfort, missing the entirety of our relationship. My sorrow grows and swallows up everything else: the moments I did not spend with him, the decisions I made not in his best interest but for myself. My relationship with this cat outlasted my relationship with either of my parents, and this I came to define home: where he was to be found. I cry for so hard and for so long that I am no longer crying about these twenty three years only but about the whole world, about decisions made and unmade, about other cats and other people and the whole past and the entirety of the future. Then I am empty, and ready, and still.” (P. 251) I read about my own grief about putting Simon down right there. I highly recommend this book. It’s a quick read and very much one of my favorite surprises this year.

  21. 5 out of 5

    Linda

    Have you ever had a time in your life when you finally see that silver lining in a cloud only for it to turn out to be a hail storm? The financial and emotional stress Ms. Moore went through when she won a so-called free house is kind of like thinking you've found shelter from a storm only to be washed away while you're cozy under the covers. Yet, the memoir wasn't a downer. She writes in short anecdotes that feel more like a friend kvetching with you over coffee, offering good times and bad, the Have you ever had a time in your life when you finally see that silver lining in a cloud only for it to turn out to be a hail storm? The financial and emotional stress Ms. Moore went through when she won a so-called free house is kind of like thinking you've found shelter from a storm only to be washed away while you're cozy under the covers. Yet, the memoir wasn't a downer. She writes in short anecdotes that feel more like a friend kvetching with you over coffee, offering good times and bad, the exotic and everyday, the friendly neighbors and the grumpy organizations. To put it simply, the free houses in Detroit were not all they were cracked up to be, and certainly not free. Ms. Moore was dropped into the middle of a Bangladesh neighborhood. Most were lovely neighbors, especially the children, but there were a lot of cultural differences to get used to. I wasn't sure I'd like the book, but it was so interesting that I read it in one day. The free houses for writers was a good idea gone bad. Ms. Moore tells us about that along with funny stories, happy stories, cat stories, and more. Thanks to Netgalley, Catapult Books, and the author for allowing me to read and review this digital ARC.

  22. 4 out of 5

    Carly Thompson

    Memoir about the author's move to Banglatown in Detroit after winning a "free" house from an arts organization. In short snippets, the author documents her relationship with her neighbors, the city, and interrogates the idea of what it means to be a gentrifier in a minority community. Memoir about the author's move to Banglatown in Detroit after winning a "free" house from an arts organization. In short snippets, the author documents her relationship with her neighbors, the city, and interrogates the idea of what it means to be a gentrifier in a minority community.

  23. 5 out of 5

    Carla Bayha

    Single queer female author gets arts stipend that comes with free house in the Detroit neighborhood of Banglatown. All she has to do is stay in the house for two years, and the house is hers to keep or sell. What could go wrong for her? Well for starters, her neighbors are distrustful of her lack of a husband, and her house turns out to be more of a fixer upper than advertised. Buried in the light-hearted "year in Provence" bits are some troubling realities about life in Detroit after they pull Single queer female author gets arts stipend that comes with free house in the Detroit neighborhood of Banglatown. All she has to do is stay in the house for two years, and the house is hers to keep or sell. What could go wrong for her? Well for starters, her neighbors are distrustful of her lack of a husband, and her house turns out to be more of a fixer upper than advertised. Buried in the light-hearted "year in Provence" bits are some troubling realities about life in Detroit after they pull down all the old houses, and who really benefits from that. Since "Gentrified" was written about a period a few years before the pandemic, you want to know how the neighborhood children did with zoom classes, when the cable company won't even come to repair what is already in place. And most disturbing of all is the history of the foreclosed houses that do survive the wrecker's ball. Were their owners notified? Were they paying some of the highest rates in the country for services they never gott? Did they owe maybe tens of dollars and not thousands in taxes, when their houses were taken away? And did that happen to the prior owner of the author's house? Masterfully written, I want to go back and read some of the author's other books.

  24. 5 out of 5

    Anna

  25. 4 out of 5

    Abby Austin

  26. 5 out of 5

    Heather

  27. 4 out of 5

    Joyce Maroney

  28. 5 out of 5

    Isabella

  29. 5 out of 5

    Anne Moore

  30. 5 out of 5

    Tina

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