Top critical review
Major let down!
Reviewed in the United States on May 5, 2020
I was excited to read a book by such an accomplished award winning writer. I was disappointed in the disjointed, fragmented and tangential organization of the novel. Each chapter does not feed itself to the next, its as if they stand alone as short stories forced to be in the same book because the characters are related. Very taxing and tedious to read and make some sense of what is happening on the page. There are many moments where the author rambles on and on, with a series of over 15 commas in a single sentence you feel will never end.
He also does a major disservice to minority groups by presenting them with highly stereotypical language and features (for example African American neighborhood gossip girl named "BumBum") and a man nicknamed "Hatian sensation" with his voodoo dolls.
He also creates a world where all women are victims of circumstance and born to experience pain and displeasure with life (just by virtue of their sex). Its difficult to pretend that all women are miserable and men are here to save them.
The patterns of misogyny and inflated racial tension are indebted in the book. We are supposed to forgive the author because he himself is biracial, but appears solely "Black" and grew up in the projects . The racial stereotypes serve to give the audience cheap laughs, yet the question is who is he writing for? Instead these stereotypes produce anger for readers of these races as they are exaggerations and arbitrary at best.
You imagine there will be an enlightening ending worthy of your time and effort navigating through torturous prose, but are left destroyed on your couch reaching for whiskey. It is not a moment of defeat yet of victory for you never have to read from this book again!