Speak No Evil is the rarest of novels: the one you start out just to read, then end up sinking so deeply into it, seeing yourself so clearly in it, that the novel starts reading you.”



This new work from the author of Beasts of No Nation is about a Nigerian family now living in Washington D.C. Here in America 2 sons have been born, the oldest, OJ has moved out of the house and Niru who lives at home and is a senior in High School.

He is a terrific track runner and he has already been accepted by Harvard for admittance in the fall. He seems to have a terrific future ahead of him. But he has a secret he keeps from everyone. Niru is gay, and the first person to find out about this is his best friend Meredith, who has a serious crush on him.

She will discover his secret when she attempts to seduce him and needs to know why she is being rejected. Meredith will be supportive, encouraging Niru to explore his sexuality, even going so far as to place Apps on his phone that could help him find other locals like himself. Niru’s parents are deeply religious and very conservative and when the Father accidentally discovers the truth about his son there is hell to pay.

The book will deal with how Niru’s sexuality is handled by himself, his parents and Meredith. The insight into the terrible anguish caused by the non-acceptance of his homosexuality is both saddening and heart wrenching. Niru will have one other problem, dealing with white america. Told in the first person by Niru for most of the book, then told by Meredith to the conclusion, it offers a keen truthful look at what these issues can still cause in the home, even today.

A short book at 207 pages, it is well written and very worthy of being read.


Reviewed by:

Richard Franco

Added 2nd August 2018

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Richard Franco