Author: NoViolet Bulawayo
Genre: African Literature/Fiction
My Rating: 4 Stars
Year of Publication: 2013
Number of Pages: 304
Darling and her friends live in a shanty called Paradise- which of course is no such thing. It isn't all bad, though. There's mischief and adventure, games of Find bin Laden, stealing guavas, singing Lady Gaga at the tops of their voices.
They dream of the paradises of America, Dubai, Europe, where Madonna and Barack Obama and David Beckham live. For Darling, that dream will come true. But, like the thousands of people all over the world trying to forge new lives far from home, Darling finds this new paradise brings its own set of challenges- for her and also for those she's left behind.
I came across the first chapter of this book, which is titled 'Hitting Budapest', whilst reading the Caine African Prize for Writing 2011. Check out my review of that here. Initially I thought the story odd, because I was only reading one chapter of the whole book and I was completely lost. But I later discovered this book and now everything adds up.
I must say, I really enjoyed this book. The names of the characters, style of writing, the titles of the chapters and everything in general was brilliant. Chapter 16, 'How they lived', in my opinion was so raw and almost accurately depicted the average immigrant in diaspora.
The only problem I had was that I felt Bulawayo (the author) cramped too many events in just one book. There were so many events happening in just one book, and quite a lot of characters. Often times I had to pause while reading to try to recall, who a particular character was.
I also didn't quite like how the book was concluded. I wanted to know what became of Darling and her counterparts.
You can purchase the book here on Africareeds.
PS:Check out my favourite quotes page xx