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review 2017-10-17 04:28
Born a Crime
Born a Crime - Trevor Noah

I was not really familiar with Trevor Noah when this book became available on NetGalley, but the title stood out. Later, when it was still on my to-read pile, I got a "you should read this" note from my sister-in-law through Goodreads. Since this was unusual, I moved it to the top of my list.

 

I was at the University of Maryland during the height of the Anti-Apartheid protests, and I was a (very small!) part of the protests outside the South African embassy in DC. Nevertheless, my concept of life in South Africa was very limited. Noah's essays provide a unique perspective of a life on the fringes of so many different cultures. They are at turns heartbreaking and hilarious, for every outrageous thing Noah does there is an equally outlandish story about his mother. Mother and son are almost, as they say, two sides of the same coin. I agree with Noah when he describes the book as a love letter to his mother, it is all that and so much more. A must read, sure to move and inspire.

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text 2017-07-24 05:00
24 in 48 Readathon: It's a Wrap
Whispers Under Ground - Ben Aaronovitch
Born a Crime: Stories from a South African Childhood - Trevor Noah
Strangers on a Train - Patricia Highsmith

I met my goal of 24 hours reading. Yay!

 

I finished 3 books:

 

Whispers Under Ground: 10 hours, 17 minutes

Born A Crime: 8 hours, 50 minutes

Strangers on a Train: 289 pages.

 

Both audiobooks were both great choices for a readathon, but highly recommended for anytime.

 

I'm off to bed.  I'm exhausted.

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review 2017-07-03 01:58
audio freebie
Born a Crime: Stories from a South African Childhood - Trevor Noah

This book really stalked me. It's true; I'm not even a huge fan of the Daily Show. Look, it isn't Stewart or Noah, it's just not really my thing. I've even given up watching Samantha Bee after the election too - I just can't for some reason. But Noah in his interviews has always stuck me as someone to listen to so I figured why not. I picked up a copy, for free, at the MLA convention, and then later Audible offered me the audio book for free.

See, stalking.

 

But I can see why. Noah tells stories from his life - in particular about growing up in a society where literally he should not exist - his mother is black, his father white. That should not be. He is also geeky and uncool. Yet, perhaps it was his status as outsider that allowed him such a view into what he was witnessing.

 

Noah's stories include what happened with his crew, including top dancer Hitler, when they played gigs, his experience in schools, his ability to pray, and a very funny story involving shit that is also very profound.

 

But most of all, the book is a testament to his mother, who sounds like one hell of a lady.

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review 2017-06-18 04:26
Born a Crime by Trevor Noah - My Thoughts
Born a Crime: Stories from a South African Childhood - Trevor Noah

First off, I really enjoy Trevor Noah on The Daily Show and any guest interviews I've seen him do over time.  I also enjoyed his stand-up special Afraid of the Dark and will be looking to find his other specials.  I'd heard many good things about this memoir of his, so when it was on sale, I snapped it up!

The book deals with Trevor's childhood in South Africa, growing up first in apartheid and then after the fall of apartheid.  The written word sound just like him talking in my head, which I think is good, seeing as it's a memoir, right?  Anyway, it's filled with lots of laughter and love, but there is also a lot of insight into apartheid and racism and bigotry of all sorts woven into the tales of the boy Trevor.  I thought I knew about apartheid, but I learned so much more reading Trevor's story.

It's also a love letter to his mother in many ways.  A fiercely independent woman when the times were not ready for independent women, she was obviously the light of his life.  They didn't have it easy.  There was abuse, emotional and physical, from Trevor's stepfather, but he tells the stories in the same tone that he tells the rest of his story that I didn't find myself getting upset, just quietly horrified.  I don't know if that makes any sense, but there you go.

So yes, I loved this book and have been recommending it all over the place even though I wasn't finished reading it!  *LOL*  And now that I've finished, I shall definitely continue!!

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text 2017-04-10 17:44
Born A Crime
Born a Crime: Stories from a South African Childhood - Trevor Noah

All I kept hearing about this book was how amazing it was. And man, it did not disappoint. South Africa is no joke. Trevor manages to tell some horrible stories with good humor. He's honest, up front and open about his own criminal past, he tells about the abuse he suffered at the hands of his stepfather and he shows an undying love for his family. He's a true testament to the rags to riches story. If you need an eye opening account of a real, poor life, read this book.

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