Every Day is for the Thief
A candid tale of political and spiritual corruption from the author of international bestseller Open City.
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A young man returns to Nigeria after fifteen years in New York. The country of his childhood has changed: it has found fast-food restaurants, email cafes, contempt for authority and the all-consuming draw of ‘money for nothing’. From the consulate back in Manhattan to the dusty streets of Lagos, life runs like clockwork — as long as you can pay the fee: a bribe for the visa clerk; a ‘Christmas gift’ at immigration. Petrol pumps overcharge and internet cafes overflow with scammers. Every Day is for the Thief is a candid tale of political and spiritual corruption, and a moving account of what it means to go home.
As readers of Cole's novel Open City will expect, this book is beautifully written, compelling, concise and with a degree of romantic abandon.
One of the things I immediately loved about Every Day is For the Thief is its refusal to conform to genre, which makes reading it, especially after a steady stream of plot-driven novels, feel like coming up for air...In the poetic final shot, Lagos holds her head with dignity, and she looks stunning.
The short, elegantly crafted chapters of Every Day is for the Thief offer accutely observed snapshots of Lagos life. The appeal of this novel lies...in the sheer intimate pleasure of a passionate examination of the flaws of the beloved.
Teju Cole has a photographer's eye for detail.
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