…a…tale, set in Afghanistan, California, Paris and the Greek islands. And The Mountains Echoed is a story about…the siblings Abdullah and Pari, separated at a young age. Early on in the book, a young Abdullah thinks that he would rather forget Pari than be haunted by her memory…
Darling promises her mother that she will come home for a visit soon, even though she knows she won’t because she doesn’t have the proper paperwork to return to America again. She misses the friends she grew up with, but at the same time feels estranged from them. One of them, Chipo, tells her on a Skype call that she can’t refer to Zimbabwe as her country anymore, since she treated it as a burning house and ran away from it instead of trying to put out the flames: “Darling, my dear, you left the house burning and you have the guts to tell me, in that stupid accent that you were not even born with, that doesn’t even suit you, that this is your country?”
more about this first novel, here.
…Carlos Fuentes is the subject of a small, literary boom on the anniversary of his death. Fuentes died one year ago [and] This week his…publisher…released more than a dozen of his works as e-books for the first time, including the epic and groundbreaking 1962 novel “The Death of Artemio Cruz.”
…a hearse stops. Two men slide out a coffin and a limp body, and they leave. The limp body eventually comes to life: It’s a young man, a black South African who has been transported across the border into Botswana. A refugee, he looks up to see a thin, ghost-like dog sitting next to him. As the man begins to walk, in search of food and a place to sleep, the white dog follows him.
“I think I’m ridiculously fortunate. I consider myself a Nigerian—that’s home, my sensibility is Nigerian. But I like America, and I like that I can spend time in America. But, you know, I look at the world through Nigerian eyes, and I am happiest when I am in Nigeria. I feel most—I question myself the least in Nigeria. You know, I don’t think of myself as anything like a ‘global citizen’ or anything of the sort. I am just a Nigerian who’s comfortable in other places.”
more from a conversation (audio and text) with the author, here.
…all the markers of a novel written in the…Southern gothic tradition…references…to race, poverty, the blues, voodoo and an ill-fated brothel…the Southern literati have raised an eyebrow at its author: Bill Cheng, a 29-year-old Chinese-American from Queens who has never set foot in Mississippi.