Winner of the PEN/Faulkner Award for American Fiction, and one of America's most talented novelists, Richard Wiley gives fresh proof of his scope and power in this major novel set in Africa. Jerry Neal, an American living in Lagos, is principal of an international school attended by children of Americans living abroad and the African elite. The wife he loved is dead, and gWinner of the PEN/Faulkner Award for American Fiction, and one of America's most talented novelists, Richard Wiley gives fresh proof of his scope and power in this major novel set in Africa. Jerry Neal, an American living in Lagos, is principal of an international school attended by children of Americans living abroad and the African elite. The wife he loved is dead, and guiding the education of the offspring of others is his chief source of satisfaction and self-esteem. He is a man floating free, with both the privileges and purposelessness of detachment. He remains a stranger in the teeming, tumultous city. But Neal's self-contained world is suddenly shattered. He finds himself in prison, the victim of a government power play and his involvement with a group of Nigerian dissidents. Stripped of his mantle of immunity, he becomes more emotionally human again, living in his own skin, feeling the chill of danger, the heat of desire. Against his will, schoolmaster Neal begins his own education - one that takes him into the arms of the estranged wife of charismatic dissident leader Beany Abubakar. Thus Jerry Neal is seduced into a commune of serious people - artists and activists struggling against ruthless fate... and into confrontation with the prickly Abubakar himself, a leader whose arrogance is matched by intelligence, and whose passionate idealism is equaled by brutal realism. And slowly Neal starts to understand African aspirations... other kinds of lives and values... the barriers of language and culture to meaningful communication. This discovery unites him with the rebels in a plot to seize power slipping from the hands of a failing government. And it brings him to an ultimate reckoning of what commitment means and costs in the African crucible of choice and change. This extraordinary, beautifully crafted, and often funny novel is a riveting revelation of a distant land and its people brought tellingly home to the heart....
|Number of Pages||:||272 Pages|
|Status||:||Available For Download|
|Last checked||:||21 Minutes ago!|
Indigo reads completely differently than the other novels I have read by Richard Wiley (namely, Commodore Perry's Minstrel Show and Soldier in Hiding). This novel is something of an intriguing mystery that seems to be slowly unraveled by the main character, but which really ends up unraveling him (in a character growth kind of way). Wiley's work, however, no matter the uniqueness of each novel, are exemplary works on humanity. That is, he creates such genuine characters and weaves the tales of their lives in such a way that is illustrative of what it is to be human-- so rare in the modern world of writing which is so obsessed with good vs evil, victory vs defeat. I say 'Bravo!' to Prof. Wiley.
I read this a very long time ago...I'm not sure when...at least 15 years ago. I liked it enough to give to my Mom, and she never read it. She recently gave it back...I did not recognize it immediately. We agreed I had probably given it to her. I really enjoyed what turned out to be a re-reading of the novel. It's interesting to learn what I remembered and what I forgot. This has some tones of magical realism, and history...enough that my adult self felt it was authentic. It's fun...a bit of a mystery with comic elements. I enjoy the main character...a quirky, self-depreciating man. It deserves the awards it received.
The principal of an American school in Nigeria is falsely accused of a serious crime, and finds himself caught up in a web of intrigue that challenges his perspectives on the world and himself. A lyrical, redemptive novel that beautifully captures the oneness of humanity.
Widowed principal of an international school in Nigeria gets wrapped up in a coup attempt. Compelling at times but slow at other times. Interesting images of Africa, but overall not a memorable story.