A new review for The Shouting in the Dark is in the latest issue of Moving Worlds: A Journal of Transcultural Writings (16.2). Writer Melissa de Villiers calls it a “fine coming-of-age novel, which vividly explores ideas of memory, identity, and what it means to belong”, noting that:
Boehmer paints a haunting picture of a deeply troubled family unravelling, but as the novel progresses, it becomes clear that this is a double investigation – into the moral chaos of apartheid South Africa as well as self. It is a mark of the writer’s skill that this is achieved organically, with nuance, through the telling of ElIa’s awakening; it never feels heavy-handed or contrived.
Boehmer’s nuanced dramatization of these issues, using her substantial talents for storytelling, brings them in absorbing ways to life.
Read more on the journal’s website
Tabish Khair has written as evocative review of The Shouting in the Dark in the September–November 2016 issue of Biblio: A Review of Books:
A haunting evocation of a childhood, this novel is also a confirmation of an identity that cannot be reduced to words. […] [A]s was the case with Kurtz and Marlow in Conrad’s great novella [Heart of Darkness], what it finally reveals is the necessity and limitations of words. Except that in Boehmer’s novel, what is brought back from Africa is not a lie made of hollow words. Instead, it is an experience – charged, brutal, contradictory, and yet containing within itself the possibilities of truth.
Read the full review
Elleke will be presenting a seminar entitled “Migration Impacts” at the House of Commons on 1 November 2016.
Migration has been occurring from the Indian sub-continent into the UK for well over a hundred years. How far can our understanding of the impact on our culture help shape our future policy?
The event is part of the University of Oxford’s “Possibilities” series, and is hosted by Virendra Sharma, MP. Entry is by invitation only.
Indian Arrivals, Elleke’s latest academic publication, has won a 2016 ESSE Book Award for Literatures in the English language! The awards were announced at the ESSE (The European Society for the Study of English) conference in Galway on 24 August 2016.
Jade Lee has given The Shouting in the Dark a glowing review in Afrikult., praising Boehmer for her seamless “interweaving of the personal, political and historical in such a way that engages the reader.” She writes:
Like the book’s portrayal of South Africa, the story is circular. It is layered and nuanced; it is a song of possibility, longing and grief that continually loops back upon itself making new words out of the stories of the past. Like any excellent book it both speaks to the specificity of its historical and geographical location and to the broader nature of human relationships and belonging.
Read the full review
A new review of The Shouting in the Dark appears in Issue 21 of the Maple Tree Literary Supplement. In it, Gerri Kimber calls the book “Elleke Boehmer’s most powerful, spellbinding novel to date.”
Read the full review
Elleke’s latest critical work, Indian Arrivals 1870–1915: Networks of British Empire has been shortlisted for an ESSE (European Society for the Study of English) Book Award 2016. The winners will be announced at the ESSE General Assembly in Galway on 24 August.
Read more about the book
Elleke will be presenting a paper, entitled ‘Eavesdropping or Broadcasting – how to tell stories in the dark,’ at Telling Tales, Writing Stories, an interdisciplinary colloquium at TORCH in Oxford.
Find out more and register
Elleke will be interviewed by Nancy Jouwe at this year’s Tong Tong Fair about Op de veranda.
The Shouting in the Dark has been longlisted for this year’s Sunday Times Barry Ronge Fiction Prize. As Books Live note, the prize criteria stipulate that the winner should be “a novel of rare imagination and style, evocative, textured and a tale so compelling as to become an enduring landmark of contemporary fiction”.
The shortlist will be announced on Saturday 14 May at the Franschhoek Literary Festival.
See the full list at Books Live.