Shouldn't things actually happen once in a while, in order for a book to be considered a novel? If so, then this one doesn't qualify.
The novel is setting is the interior of an unnamed East African nation during the 1960s-70s: a time following an upheaval of the government. What follows is the periphery of the coups, insurrection, and despotism of the region during that era. Salim, an Indian Muslim from the coast, has purchased, after the first rebellion, a business in the western reaches of the country: at a bend in the river that has become a trading center. The object of a businessman, we are reminded, is to make a small profit on investment and to know when to sell out before politics and dissonance change the plain of the playing field. But, for a foreigner there is only one way out.
Deep meditative thoughts enmeshed in a compelling narrative told by a shopkeeper in Africa, located at a bend in the river, Naipaul grasps one's basic need to belong . . . and the struggle to survive our ever present state of man's inhumanity to man.
Story of a man uprooted from his home in India who comes to live in an isolated town at the bend of a great reiver in a newly independent African nation.
Conflict between the allure of the modern world and the hold of tradition.
Interesting and well-written account of multi-culturalism in the heart of Africa.
Sort of floats through the air like a miasma of....something.