Jerusalem by Patrick Neate

Jerusalem

Patrick Neate

At once blisteringly funny and extremely disturbing, the action richochets between 1900 (Boer war concentration camp, Gloucestershire morris dancing) and 2008 (New Labour's African initiative in the fictional dictatorship of Zambawi and London's high priest of urban cool) examining what it means to be English through the eyes of both English and Africans. Very highly recommended.

Extract

But Zambawi would be different, wouldn't it? He'd have no armed guard, no air-conditioned convoy, no earnest aid workers to protect and reassure him. There'd have been no clearing and no cleaning. This was the 'real Africa' and in all likelihood he'd catch the Africans at it - being African, that is. And this was why he was apprehensive.
The minister stood up, took a deep breath, and momentarily allocated the little imagination he did have to picturing his triumphant return from Zimbawi.

Parallels
  • One Big Damn Puzzler by John Harding
  • Cloud Atlas by David Mitchell
  • Waiting For the Wild Beasts to Vote by Ahmadou Kourama
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Violence
Explicit sexual content