Faith's Reviews > The Boy Next Door

The Boy Next Door by Irene Sabatini
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Jul 16, 10

bookshelves: read-fiction
Read from July 06 to 16, 2010

Shortlisted for the 2010 Orange Award, and it's very well written. However, I quit after part 1 (something more than 100 pages). I was in college when Zimbabwe-Rhodesia became Zimbabwe, and I followed the process with my poly sci class, so I was looking forward to reading about the country through a novelist's eyes. But that exciting part of its history is presented in a dull way, at least in part 1.

Also, there is a significant language barrier in that "the boy next door" uses slang that is difficult to figure out from the context; some I never did figure out. Simultaneously I was reading The Brief Wondrous Life of Oscar Wao,> which has even steeper language barriers, but it also has a compelling story and an interesting narrative style, which kept me going. Part 1 of this book is a good-girl-attracted-to-bad-boy story that isn't any less predictable for being set in Africa.
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Comments (showing 1-2 of 2) (2 new)

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message 1: by jo (new) - rated it 4 stars

jo i think it won, no? or did it win something else?


message 2: by Canadian (new)

Canadian Reader Faith,
I understand the language barrier you're talking about. For instance, within the first few pages, there's mention of "the boy's kaya" and few context clues to make clear what a kaya is. I think some sort of glossary needed to be appended. I found your commentary interesting and useful, given your knowledge of the country. Thanks for the review.


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