Ghana Must Go
ISBN 9781101605776 | 336 pages | 05 Mar 2013 | The Penguin Press
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A “buoyant” and “rapturous” debut novel (The Wall Street Journal) about the transformative power of unconditional love
Electric, exhilarating, and beautifully crafted, Ghana Must Go introduces the world to Taiye Selasi, a novelist of extraordinary talent. In a sweeping narrative that takes readers from Accra to Lagos to London to New York, it is at once a portrait of a modern family and an exploration of the importance of where we come from to who we are.
A renowned surgeon and failed husband, Kweku Sai dies suddenly at dawn outside his home in suburban Accra. The news of his death sends a ripple around the world, bringing together the family he abandoned years before. Moving with great elegance through time and place, Ghana Must Go charts their circuitous journey to one another and, along the way, teaches us that the truths we speak can heal the wounds we hide.
"Ghana Must Go comes with a bagload of prepublication praise. For once, the brouhaha is well deserved. Ms. Selasi has an eye for the perfect detail: a baby's toenails 'like dewdrops', a woman sleeps 'like a cocoyam. A thing without senses... unplugged from the world.' As a writer she has a keen sense of the baggage of childhood pain and an unforgettable voice on the page. Miss out on Ghana Must Go and you will miss one of the best new novels of the season."
"Buoyant... a joy... Rapturous."
—The Wall Street Journal
"[Selasi] writes elegantly about the ways people grow apart — husbands and wives, brothers and sisters, parents and kids."
Advance Praise for Ghana Must Go:
"Powerful... A finely crafted yarn that seamlessly weaves the past and present, Selasi’s moving debut expertly limns the way the bonds of family endure even when they are tested and strained."
"Gorgeous. Reminiscent of Jhumpa Lahiri but with even greater warmth and vibrancy, Selasi’s novel, driven by her eloquent prose, tells the powerful story of a family discovering that what once held them together could make them whole again."
—Publishers Weekly (starred review)
"Taiye Selasi is a young writer of staggering gifts and extraordinary sensitivity. Ghana Must Go seems to contain the entire world, and I shall never forget it.”
—Elizabeth Gilbert, author of Eat, Pray, Love
"Taiye Selasi is a totally new and near perfect voice that spans continents and social strata as effortlessly as the insertion of an ellipsis or a dash. With mesmerizing craftsmanship and massive imagination she takes the reader on an unforgettable journey across continents and most importantly deeply into the lives of the people whom she writes about. She de-'exoticizes' whole populations and demographics and brings them firmly into the readers view as complicated and complex human beings. Taiye Selasi's Ghana Must Go is a big novel, elemental, meditative, and mesmerizing; and when one adds the words 'first novel,' we speak about the beginning of an amazing career and a very promising life in letters."
-- Sapphire, author of The Kid and Push
"Ghana Must Go is both a fast moving story of one family's fortunes and an ecstatic exploration of the inner lives of its members. With her perfectly-pitched prose and flawless technique, Selasi does more than merely renew our sense of the African novel: she renews our sense of the novel, period. An astonishing debut."
—Teju Cole, author of Open City
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