A dazzlingly accomplished debut collection explores the ties that bind parents and children, husbands and wives, lovers and friends to one another and to the places they call home. Read more...
A dazzlingly accomplished debut collection explores the ties that bind parents and children, husbands and wives, lovers and friends to one another and to the places they call home. In "Who Will Greet You at Home," a National Magazine Award finalist for The New Yorker, A woman desperate for a child weaves one out of hair, with unsettling results. In "Wild," a disastrous night out shifts a teenager and her Nigerian cousin onto uneasy common ground. In "The Future Looks Good," three generations of women are haunted by the ghosts of war, while in "Light," a father struggles to protect and empower the daughter he loves. And in the title story, in a world ravaged by flood and riven by class, experts have discovered how to "fix the equation of a person" - with rippling, unforeseen repercussions. Evocative, playful, subversive, and incredibly human, What It Means When a Man Falls from the Sky heralds the arrival of a prodigious talent with a remarkable career ahead of her.
Publishers Weekly® Reviews
- Reviewed in: Publishers Weekly, page .
- Review Date: 2017-02-27
- Reviewer: Staff
In her powerful and incisive debut collection, Arimah shuttles between continents and realities to deliver 12 stories of loss, hope, violence, and family relationships. In Wild, a reckless teenage girl is sent from America to her aunt in Nigeria, only to get caught up in the life of her equally reckless cousin. Second Chances sees a deceased mother magically reappear in her familys life, with mixed results, and Buchis Girls is about a widow struggling to raise two daughters while living in her sisters house. Mother and daughter grifters deal with an unexpected pregnancy in Windfalls, while the collections futuristic title story explores a world in which mathematicians have unlocked the secrets to all humanity, allowing humans to remove emotional pain from others and disrupt the laws of nature. Arimah gracefully inserts moments of levity into each tale and creates complex characters who are easy to both admire and despise. From the chilling opening story, The Future Looks Good, structured like a Russian nesting doll, to the closing story, Redemption, this collection electrifies. (Apr.)