Michael Holman

Testing Times

Dreams in a Time of War: A Childhood Memoir

By

Harvill Secker 256pp £12.99 order from our bookshop

Ngugi wa Thiong’o has been a rebel all his life, prickly and quixotic, resilient and brave, Kenyan by nationality but at heart a Kikuyu, fiercely proud to be a member of the country’s largest tribe.

Now seventy-two, the novelist and dramatist looks back, in this memoir, on a childhood spent on the front line of what has been called Britain’s ‘dirtiest colonial war’. The roots of just about every one of the causes that he has pursued for nearly fifty years can be found in its pages.

Follow Literary Review on Twitter

  • Last Tweets

    • Start your week with a dose of Russian Revolutionary zeal. Donald Rayfield reviews Tobie Mathew's 'Greetings From t… ,
    • A treat from the LR Archive: exactly 20 years ago, Malcolm Bradbury reviewed John Updike's 'Bech at Bay' ,
    • ‘When bullets come close, the noise they make as they go past changes from a zing to a crack’ John Lanchester's dy… ,
    • Man with a Bloody Paintbrush: Robin Simon on Lucian Freud ,
    • Jane Ridley reviews The Diaries of Kenneth Rose (ed. D R Thorpe) ,
    • ‘Look,’ says Trump. ‘The fact is I’m only human.’ On the evidence of this book that point is debatable. From the A… ,
    • From our December/January issue - here's John Banville's review of Colm Tóibín on the fathers of Wilde, Yeats and J… ,