Tremor--Teju Cole

Teju Cole's intelligence is probing and restless, and that restlessness has produced a book not quite like any of his other work.  Readers who have admired the thoughtful, meditative lucidity of Open City and of his books of essays, Known and Strange Things and Black Papers, will find something different. Tremor is altogether more unsettling, more ambitious and daring. It is angrier, thornier; it dwells longer on injustice and atrocity, from slavery to the slaughter of Native Americans, to the theft of Benin artwork for display in Europe and America. (By contrast music,  because it can't be owned in the same way, becomes in the book a source of joy.) The book jettisons continuity in favor of of abrupt changes of scene and voice,.There is a marvelous section in which the ordinary people of Lagos are imagined in their everyday struggles, as if to make reparation for the erasure of such people from history and shared memory. Each section has  something illuminating. It teaches us something that we need reminding of constantly:  the labor of seeing others deeply.  As he writes after a festive gathering in Mali: "Other people's lives.  They are not subsidiaries, they are not symbols, they are not to be collected." It teaches us, too, to be careful about the cultural monuments we admire.--RDM

Tremor: A Novel By Teju Cole Cover Image
ISBN: 9780812997118
Availability: Usually Ships in 5-7 days
Published: Random House - October 17th, 2023