Book: Born A Crime by Trevor Noah
Date Read: July 11 to 20, 2021
Rating: 5 (of 5) stars
I chose this book to fit the prompt to read a book that I was gifted, but did not ask for. I love this prompt, because those are my favorite types of books to be gifted. Sure, it’s nice to receive a book that you have been wanting, but I think it is nicer to receive a book that someone thought to pick out for you. This book was a gift from my Secret Santa—who I must say did a fabulous job.
Prior to this book, I did not know much about Trevor Noah. I knew the name as a personality on television, and probably would have associated him with the Daily Show. I am not much of a television watcher, and have only ever seen bits and pieces of anything associated with him. While I had occasionally seen the cover of the book, I am not sure that I had ever picked it up to truly consider it. I am so glad that this was gifted to me, because this one really blew me away.
This was a memoir of childhood, told through a series of short stories. While there was some continuity to the stories, they were not exactly chronological. The stories, although often dealing with some weighty content, are told with a perfect mix of seriousness and humor. Really, each story seems to be told for it’s retrospective humor, although the heaver themes of racism, apartheid, poverty, and love can be seen interwoven through each. That is—until the last chapter. Although some of this story had been alluded to earlier in the book, I was not quite prepared for the blow when it came. I will not share any spoiler details—it is something that I highly recommend you to experience for yourself.
I knew only a little of the history of South Africa before reading, and it was really interesting to learn about through the eyes of someone who experienced it as a child. Even the things I did know, I did not think of as current events, assuming that the pieces I knew came from long before my time—not something experienced by someone so close to my age.
Boris’s Thoughts: “Shame that it seems it’s only okay to have certain pets over there. Although he did have a point about peoples’ priorities when it comes to violence. 3 paws.”