Glen Phillips – Gitano Africano
A queer Jewish African-Canadian writer, musician, and entrepreneur at home on the shores of the Salish Sea, Glen Phillips was educated at HEC Montréal and the University of Victoria in environmental sciences and management. He speaks English, Spanish, French, Portuguese, Hebrew, and Italian.
Glen is currently contemplating writing his fourth novel, and has also produced a compilation of photography and poetry, some of which have guitar accompaniment.
Below are a selection of his novels. To purchase or read more, simply click on the images.
A fictional narrative recounted through time by a boy tracing his family’s search for acceptance, safety, and stability across three continents from 1880 to the present. It is a touching story of wondering, a tale of our innate need to be different yet the same as those around us, to somehow blend in with our surroundings while not losing our sense of uniqueness and individuality. The narrator, a nameless boy from an immigrant family, finds himself caught up in the tides of political struggle, forced to watch as his family, community, and country are torn apart by the tyranny of Apartheid. Through events beyond his control, he is swept from Africa to a new land and compelled to confront his own individuality, while trying to find acceptance from others for his own deep secrets.
In the early 22nd Century the United States is overwhelmed by a violent socio-economic crisis, which threatens to tear the country apart, further destabilizing a world disrupted by climate change, conflicts, pandemics, and multiple technological disruptions. Central to the crisis is a genetically engineered elite who control America’s economy and its institutions. Enjoying unparalleled wealth and opportunity, they live in a world where AI, genetic medicine, and reproductive technologies have pushed the frontiers of their existence far beyond what was once imaginable. They are the most perfect iteration of the human species to have ever walked the planet, free to pursue pleasure, vanity, and social status, oblivious to the masses of ordinary naturally conceived Americans struggling in a corporatist system designed to lock them out
Botafogo, a Portuguese word meaning “to set fire”, Botafogo is also a neighbourhood that features prominently in this novel, and was once home to one of Rio de Janeiro’s most famous football teams: Botafogo de Futebol e Regatas. Drugs, corruption, murder, deceit, passion, and hate – all rolled into one in Glen Albert Phillips’ latest novel, set in Rio de Janeiro. This is a story of two worlds, told through a dozen lives in a city of fire: rich and poor, old and young, peaceful and violent, loving and deceitful, black and white, good and evil. Rio de Janeiro, with its stunning geographical setting, its diversity of races and religious beliefs, and its explosive mix of rich alongside poor, is indeed a place to set fire.
I always believed one could never be a philosopher without one or two catch phrases, several glossy terms, and the odd quotable thought. Thus, over the past couple of years, I have taken the time to put thoughts to paper, memories to journals, and tongue in cheek expressions to post-it notes. This book has neither structure nor form. Rather, it is none other than a scrapbook of journal entries and poems written by me, myself, and I. Open at your own risk, hopefully you’ll have a good laugh, and a deep enough reflection on some of the things I have had to say over the past few years.