In this dazzling debut by a singular new talent, the sprawling, swampy, cacophonous city of Lagos, Nigeria, provides the backdrop to the story of Elvis, a teenage. This one-page guide includes a plot summary and brief analysis of Graceland by Chris Abani. GraceLand is a novel by Nigerian-American author Chris Abani. Graceland is a dazzling debut by a singular new talentThe sprawling, swampy, cacophonous city of Lagos, Nigeria, provides the backdrop to the story of Elvis.

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After failing to succeed as a street performer, Elvis goes from being a laborer, to a male escort, to an unwitting human trafficker, and finally to working as a caretaker of young beggars and living on the street.

Quick Review: Chris Abani’s Graceland

It’s certainly not for the faint of heart! Chris Abani Nigeria Quick Review. His presence throughout the novel serves as a crude, and often ignored, moral compass. He was a political prisoner in Nigeria at various times during and To ask other readers questions about GraceLandplease sign up. However, other reviews, such as Kirkus Reviewshad a slightly more critical view on the novel, stating: Byatt, and when you read Chris Abani you see exactly how the truth can kill.

This novel blew me away!

There were times where I had to close the book and take a moment. After enduring days of torture, he is released back to the streets, where he meets up with Redemption again, who gives him the passport. Names play a part in this, yes. None of these characters are dismissible or caricatured, and Elvis builds intimate relationships with him, as he tries to figure out who to be the Elvis impersonation seems like a great metaphor for this quest to gracelxnd out how to embody masculinity.

The novel jumps between two settings, the village of Afikpo from untiland Lagos from and onward.

baani GraceLand left me satisfied, but I hope that Abani – who was raised in a mansion with cars and servents – doesn’t continue to romanticize the poor, abused artist. While Elvis is surrounded by strong women in his past – his mother, his grandmother, and his aunt, among others – they disappear as his journey progresses. Gracealnd of the characters that are featured prominently are his father, Sunday Oke, a brusque drunk, who after unsuccessfully running for mayor of their town, left for Lagos to unsuccessfully find work.


And I see a lot of it happening in literature as well. And yet beyond that, he was that scar, carved by hate and smallness and fear onto the world’s face. Worth reading for its searing depiction of modern Africa, but Abani is no Chinua Achebe. A Conversation on Gambit and African Writing. He befriends an interesting cast of characters that help him secure work, teach him about the world, and hasten his development.

Sure, Elvis tries to make a living as an Elvis impersonator, dance and smile for the rich white tourists, but nobody wants a year-old black and tonedeaf king of rock’n’roll. You know it is taboo to whistle at night. Every alternating chapter brings us back into the past, starting with Elvis as a five-year-old little boy and moving all the way up to his present so that both times eventually meet, in an almost seamless fashion.

GRACELAND by Chris Abani | Kirkus Reviews

The story leaves you ramsacked, you feel like a shipwreck. The book is most powerful when it refrains from polemic and didacticism and simply follows its protagonist on his daily journey through the violent, harsh Nigerian landscape. Desiring to do something to intervene, Elvis tells his father, only to be met with derision and consternation.

The book is just descriptive well-written poverty porn for a western audience that’s hungry for evidence that supports its foregone conclusions about african poverty, brutality, filth, rape, hunger, incest, sodomy, squalor, rape, filth, more rape, poverty, and oh, also poverty.

Quick Review: Chris Abani’s Graceland | The Mantle

That’s about all they have left, it seems; they live in a shanty town in Lagos, Nigeria, and if there’s any meaning to the fact that Sunday is a drunk to whom every day is a day of rest, Redemption is a small-time bandit, and Elvis himself a failed dancer, abqni nothing they try to think about: It was nice reading about the life of a youth living in Lagos. Dec 24, Kevin Warman rated it it was amazing.

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I’m not going to lie, this book isn’t a happy one but the story is touching and the language Abani uses is gorgeous. He has been named after an American entertainer who he tries to imitate meanwhile he fights with his father, the failed politician Sunday, and has to cope with his father’s new wife comfort. These sections at first seem showy and tacked on, but by the end of the book their significance becomes clearer.

You will d Any time a book is discussed in my book club, I find I come to appreciate the book more than I did while reading it. He was sure the crowd made quite a sight: Share your thoughts with other gracelanx.

An hour graxeland, he grqceland with a start and, standing up, dusted off the seat of his trousers. Many of the slums in Lagos are makeshift structures built above swampland: In the very first scene of the book, when the protagonist Elvis is awoken by a pounding Nigerian rainstorm, we read this: The Gracepand of the Water Lily.

It is a portrayal of a boy forced to grow up too fast, and of a country forced into turmoil, ababi, and hope. Which begs the question, how much Chris Abani is there in Elvis and Black?

Jun 24, Rashida rated it liked it Shelves: He came to the university where I work to speak to a room full of international students, and garceland a delectable plate of Southern soul food, he told stories. Jones is African American, but spent a year in Nigeria when her father was a Fulbright scholar there. Gracelandlike Jessica Hagedorn’s novels Dogeaters or Dream Junglecrams fistfuls of characters into bustling Third World nightmares.