Title: Swing Time
Author: Zadie Smith
Pub Date: November 15th, 2016
My Rating: ★★★☆☆
View on Goodreads
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Synopis from Goodreads:
An ambitious, exuberant new novel moving from north west London to West Africa, from the multi-award-winning author of White Teeth andOn Beauty.
Two brown girls dream of being dancers – but only one, Tracey, has talent. The other has ideas: about rhythm and time, about black bodies and black music, what constitutes a tribe, or makes a person truly free. It’s a close but complicated childhood friendship that ends abruptly in their early twenties, never to be revisited, but never quite forgotten, either…
Dazzlingly energetic and deeply human, Swing Time is a story about friendship and music and stubborn roots, about how we are shaped by these things and how we can survive them. Moving from North-West London to West Africa, it is an exuberant dance to the music of time.
This is just hard. Zadie Smith is one of my favorite authors. I adore her other works, and when I heard about her new book I was excited. I couldn’t wait to finally read it. And now I read it. And I’m not happy. It wasn’t anything as enjoyable read as her previous books. It was quite frankly boring.
It’s a story of women friendship. There are two story lines that intervene a little bit, the first plot line is the present time when the main character is working for superstar Aimee. The second storyline is her childhood and friendship with Tracey. The main character is quite flat and uninspiring. We learn so much about her life and her history, but still, I’m left with an impression that she is just a mean to tell us a story of Aimee and Tracey. She’s the main character but not the main focus.
I struggled to follow the story u because it was jumping between different times and places constantly. I was getting lost and every time it took me some time to adjust to the new place and time. This was a big issue at the beginning, but later in the book, it was pretty easy – one chapter about Aimee and one chapter about childhood and Tracey.
The most interesting part of the story for me was reading about the superstar that is pouring her wealth to a poor village in Africa. Without thinking about the repercussions of such actions. Just thinking about solving the problems of poverty and education and health care with money, and feeling good about herself. Having a vision and a good noble goal, but not stopping for a while to judge if her actions are truly solving any problems in the village, is she helping or harming them?