Hello it's Sandisiwe Magadla with another book review.
So this week I finally had the opportunity to read a Zadie Smith book and I have just finished Zadie Smith 'NW' and I have to say I'm impressed I'm not sure if this is her best book because obviously it's the first book that I've read of hers but I am impressed.
NW okay, the plot summary of NW is that these four individuals who come from this same area in North-west London hence the book is called NW and this place that they all come from is called Caldwell.
I'm not sure if I'm pronouncing it right and the book basically tells us of the encounters and the background and the problems of these four individuals are facing so at the beginning of the book we meet Leah who is Irish and she's white and she has a husband who's half Algerian and half *Guadeloupean or something I don't know what it is to be honest.
I can't pronounce it and they're trying to have a baby and everything.
Um the style – the narrative style at the beginning of the book when we look through Leah's life is was very jarring for me I didn't enjoy it I was like oh I'm disappointed and this is the first time that I was reading Zadie Smith book.
I was like what is this? because it's not told in quotation marks so when the characters speak there's no quotation marks there's just dashes and I was like oh I didn't enjoy it at first but I was like Iet me read through, let me give it a chance, it's good to be uncomfortable and everything like that.
Um after Leah we get to Felix who is Jamaican I think I'm yeah I think he's Jamaican and he has this lover who's also I'm not I think she's from.
she's Nigerian and Felix's life is a mess.
He's a former drug addict and basically Felix's storyline was just about his day then something at the end of his bit.
Part something happens to him which I won't say because it's going to be a spoiler.
After that we have Natalie who is Leah's best friend but there's like tension between them.
For Natalie's story we start like from the very beginning so when she was still in her old neighbourhood because she's now a barrister and she's like middle class so she's not as poor as she was and Natalie is first-generation Caribbean and she's a very curious woman I don't like her because she was very pretentious and she she looked down on her old neighbourhood so much like I understand that you want to like not be poor for the rest of your life but then the way that she looked down at everyone from her old neighbourhood was just so annoying but like a part of me still liked her.
I like her way of telling her story because with Natalie's part we didn't have the same narrative style as Leah's, we had the quotation marks which I'm very comfortable with as well as for Felix I forgot to mention that part and Natalie is sexually curious which gets her into trouble and the last bit which is like very tiny is Natalie and Nathan one of her old neighbourhood.
It's not a friend but someone who lived in the neighbourhood with her, and Nathan is now homeless I don't know what he is um I think he's a pimp I'm not sure like it's not explicitly said what he does but when Natalie gets into trouble and she's taking a walk she happens to bump into Nathan and yeah they start walking together and smoking together and overall I'd give the book three-and-a-half stars out of five there are obviously like pros and cons as usual my pros uhh is as much as the narrative style was very jarring I enjoyed it because it got me out of like my comfort zone.
Also I like I liked Felix so much actually and as much as his storyline was very short I liked that and I liked most of the characters like Zadie was able to describe each of the main characters feelings and or motives and I loved that because for Leah I knew that Leah was very unhappy uhh I knew that Felix was trying to move on from his former life and he was in love shame and Natalie was this pretentious person and Nathan ugh I really did not like Nathan I don't know like I can't say the motives because I was expecting so much from Nathan but like from the beginning when people describe him, one of the characters described him I think it was Leah I like oh I'm actually looking forward to this characters part but when we finally got there like oh he's always talking about the past how this person's not better than him like okay, we get it dude, like seriously it's annoying and okay now to the cons there are more pros but time and everything and I also don't want to spoil this too much.
Cons is I hate it I hated it when the characters were talking about African.
Okay I'm contradicting myself but then when they're talking about African stuff Africans things and I'm like what are you exactly talking about? Are you talking about Ghanaian print? Are you talking about Nigerian print? Like what is it like Africa is not this piece of land where we all live together we also have like borders and everything and second con um Natalie's part dragged like at some point I was like okay this needs to end some things are very irrelevant and it was so long I thought that I wasn't going to get to Nathan's part and that just yeah because of how long um Natalie's part was.
I also found Natalie's husband very annoying okay that's not a con actually just because you find.
Um overall I'd say this is a very chilled book to read I'd recommended for people who are adults and want to read adult fiction.
I'd categorize it as adults fiction otherwise that's it and bye.