In The Spotlight: Petina Gappah’s The Book of Memory

Petina Gappah’s The Book of Memory is in the spotlight in this post from the Confessions of a Mystery Novelist blog.

Confessions of a Mystery Novelist...

Hello, All,

Welcome to another edition of In The Spotlight. The unreliable narrator has been an element in many crime novels. When it’s done well, that question of whether the narrator is being accurate/truthful can add to the suspense of a story. Let’s take a look at a case of unreliable narrator today and turn the spotlight on Petina Gappah’s The Book of Memory.

As the novel begins, a young albino woman named Mnemosyne, who’s usually known as Memory, or ‘Memo,’ is beginning a letter to a journalist named Melinda Carter, who has a history of exposing miscarriages of justice. Mnemosyne is in prison in Harare, convicted of the murder of her adoptive father, a white man named Lloyd Hendricks. In Zimbabwe, a murder conviction carries with it a mandatory death sentence. But, there’s been a change of government, and there is a chance that Mnemosyne may escape the…

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