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Every Day is for the Thief by Teju Cole

Author: Teju Cole


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A young man decides to visit Nigeria after years of absence.  Ahead lies the difficult journey back to the family house and all its memories; meetings with childhood friends and above all, facing up to the paradox of Nigeria, whose present is as burdened by the past as it is facing a new future.

Along the way, our narrator encounters life in Lagos. He is captivated by a woman reading on a danfo; attempts to check his email are frustrated by Yahoo boys; he is charmingly duped by buying fuel.  He admires the grace of an aunty, bereaved by armed robbers, and is inspired by the new malls and cultural venues.  The question is: should he stay or should he leave?

But before the story can even begin, he has to queue for his visa…

Every Day is for the Thief is a striking portrait of Nigeria in change.  Through a series of cinematic portraits of everyday life in Lagos, Teju Cole provides a fresh approach to the returnee experience.

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