: Tshuma (N.)

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374pp., paperback, Reprint, London, (2018) 2019


A novel set in modern Zimbabwe. Abednego and Agnes Mlambo’s teenage son goes missing and Zamani, their lodger, seems to be their only hope for finding him.

"House of Stone is the novel devastated Zimbabwe needed to have written. Now Novuyo Tshuma has written it. Bayethe to her scintillating talent! In the most original and fearless prose I’ve read in years, Tshuma’s scheming narrator, Zamani, reveals the personal and political disintegration that was Zimbabwe’s undoing." Tsitsi Dangarembga, author of Nervous Conditions

"Tshuma’s House of Stone is a devastating and inviting piece of fiction that is earning its raves as a beyond notable first novel ...Her book slips like sand through fingers through time and voice, masterfully condensing the history of Zimbabwe to the point where the back story is informative and provocative but not cumbersome … Tshuma deftly tells a story of colonization and decolonization both with a wide focus on the nation and the tight focus on a few people. The latter serves as a tragic microcosm of the former … Her balance between the tightest and broadest focus is admirable and efficient." Andrew Dansby, Houston Chronicle

"To call [House of Stone] clever or ambitious is to do it a disservice―it is both, but also more than that.… Tshuma is incapable of writing a boring sentence.… By the end she has managed to not only sum up Zimbabwean history, but also all of African colonial history: from devastating colonialism to the bitter wars of independence to the euphoria of self-rule and the disillusionment of the present. It is an extraordinary achievement for a first novel." Helon Habila, author of Oil on Water, for the Guardian

Novuyo Rosa Tshuma won the 2014 Herman Charles Bosman Prize for the novella Shadows. She is a fiction editor at the Bare Life Review, a journal of refugee and immigrant literature based in San Francisco. She grew up in Zimbabwe and has lived in South Africa and the USA.