Wednesday, 10 February 2016

Review of 'A Brief History of Seven Killings'

This was probably the most politically-charged novel I've read since leaving university, and I totally didn't know what I was in for when I first picked the book up. Set in Jamaica, this multi-narrative text allows readers an insight into life in the slums, and is extremely graphic at times - so if you don't want to hear about a character offering to "be buttfucked raw by Satan and his ten big-dicked demons" and the suchlike this probably isn't one for you.

As part of my English Lit course I've read books from authors all over the world, however this is the first novel that I've read by a Jamaican author talking about issues central to Jamaica itself. This intrigued me - I love learning new things about different cultures and being given somewhat of an expose, even if it is woven in with fiction. Part written in dialect, and part written in normative English, A Brief History of Seven Killings had me hooked as it showed the lives of younger gangsters, older ones, white Americans living in Jamaica and women. My one peeve? The fact that it's another multi-narrative text. This seems to have become a bit of a prerequisite for award winning novelists at the moment, and I just want to read one that doesn't have this layer of narrative, argh!

Have you read it? What did you think? 

Steph x

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