“I Will Not Be Erased” by gal-dem – Book Review

“I Will Not Be Erased” by gal-dem – Book Review

I will not be erased by Gal dem

“I Will Not Be Erased”
Our stories about growing up as people of colour

Author – gal-dem
Publisher – Walker Books
Pages – 208
Released – 6th June 2019
ISBN-13 – 978-1406386370
Format – ebook, paperback
Reviewer – Stacey
Rating – 5 Stars
I received a free copy of this book.
This post contains affiliate links.


Fourteen joyous, funny and life-affirming essays from gal-dem’s talented writers

gal-dem, the award-winning online and print magazine, is created by women and non-binary people of colour. In this thought-provoking and moving collection of fourteen essays, gal-dem’s writers use raw material from their teenage years – diaries, poems and chat histories – to explore growing up.

gal-dem have been described by the Guardian as “the agents of change we need”, and these essays essays tackle important subjects including race, gender, mental health and activism, making this essential reading for any young person.

Review new 2021

“I Will Not Be Erased” is a book that I wasn’t sure whether I should be reviewing or not. You see I am not their target audience and have not been through any of what these incredible and brave writers in the book have been through. Whilst I knew that the book would open my eyes to the world around me, I felt that this book was written with an audience in mind, young people of colour, so that they could read the stories about what the authors had been through and be able to relate fully to them and take with them some wisdom and advise that the book is providing.

However, I do believe that no matter what your upbringing, race, colour or religion it is always worthwhile to educate yourself on the world and the people in it, to get a better understanding of how people, unlike yourself, live. Through these fourteen different stories or essays, each written by a different person you are taken on a journey through various people’s teenage years via their writing, memories, poems and diary entries.

Each story is only a few pages long but they certainly give you something to think about and can be quite emotional. I won’t go over all the stories, but I will tell you that each is individual and unique. They are all heartfelt and will make you stop and think.

The book opens with Yumna Al-Arashi who is a Yemeni-Egyptian-American photographer, writer, and film-maker. She relives a childhood memory from her school days regarding racist bullying and the injustice in the school to tackle it. She looks back at how she handled the situation and via talking to her younger-self she explains what she wishes she had done differently now that she is older and wiser.

The book covers subjects such as a hatred of a mother for not allowing her younger-self to be like the other girls, insecurities about the way they looked or having to deal with racism, just a few of the subjects that have been written about.

I truly believe that this is a must-read book for teenagers. It is one that they can dip into when they need some advice. I think this is an important and inspirational book. I can see this book helping teenagers come to understand that they are individuals that need to learn to love themselves just the way they are.

Book Reviewer – Stacey

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About the Author

gal-dem are a vibrant online and print magazine, where all content is created by women and non-binary people of colour. Launched by Liv Little in 2015, gal-dem aims to open up their take on the world to a wider audience.

As well as producing the magazine, gal-dem hosts comedy nights, political panels, film festivals and museum takeovers. The have collaborated with everyone from the Guardian to the V&A, Tate and Converse.

Share your thoughts on I Will Not Be Erased in the comment section below!

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17 Responses

  1. Bentley says:

    Definitely an important read! Honestly, more curriculum in school English programs should revolve around the voices of POC. Would probably help the next generation learn a lot of empathy.

  2. Emma Mane says:

    What an important sounding book. I agree a book for all teens to read.

  3. Sounds like a really important read. I love books like this – I hope a lot of young people get their hands on this one.

  4. DJ Sakata says:

    Sounds powerful

  5. I think I would enjoy this one, Stacey! Thanks for sharing.

  6. Gemma says:

    Sounds like a really important read for everyone!
    Gemma @ Gemma’s Book Nook

  7. Shelley W says:

    I agree, it’s a book that will make a difference and is intriguing too.

  8. Finitha Jose says:

    Never heard of this book. Thank you for sharing

  9. I agree entirely.

  10. Thanks, glad you agree.

  11. It is such an important book.

  12. You are very welcome.

  13. Thanks Shelley, I hope this book does help people.

  14. You are very welcome.

  15. Great review! Thanks for sharing!