The first of these was Trevor Noah’s Born a Crime. When Noah first took over his late-night slot on The Daily Show, replacing legend Jon Stewart, I wasn’t all that interested. I had heard mixed reviews about him and don’t watch a lot of television–especially late night shows.
But then a few months ago, I saw several of his opening monologues on YouTube and got hooked. Now I watch his monologue clips regularly and I’ve become a big fan. So this book was an easy choice for me, and I was considering reading it already. I’m so glad I listened to this one instead of reading the paper copy.
One of the things that endeared Noah’s show to me is his facility with accents. And in his book, he writes many passages for the characters in his life, in a wide variety of languages. Hearing them spoken by a native speaker made them really come alive for me in a way that seeing them on the page never could have. Hearing his voice made the entire memoir more immediate.
If you enjoy memoirs–especially ones that are troubled–you will appreciate his story. After listening to all that happened to him and his family, I wonder how anyone survived childhood in South Africa, especially under Apartheid. His story is incredible, fascinating, hilarious, poignant, and devastating, all at once. I was riveted, and it made the first two days of driving on this trip fly by.