This debut collection of 18 short stories (all of which I believe were previously published in various literary journals and magazines) combine to paint a vivid picture of the lives of everyday Nigerians and of Nigerian immigrants to America. (Nigerians are by far the largest African immigrant nationality in the U.S. and I happen to live in one of the largest concentrations of them.) The title is very apt, as almost every story has some kind of connection to America, even if it's just as a roads-paved-with-gold promised land. The stories generally fall into three categories: those which show how tough life is in Nigeria, those which present a Nigerian aspiring to life in America, and those which show the struggles of Nigerian immigrants in America (as a Nigerian immigrant to America, the author seems well versed in all three categories). These themes are so strong throughout the stories that I after I read the first several, I had to set the book aside and limit myself to a story every other day or so. Each story is a captivating, well-told, and often witty, vignette -- but they definitely start to blur together when not given room to breathe. Potential readers should also know that the menfolk of Nigeria do not come out very well in Osondu's depictions. They tend to be either corrupt, cruel, drunk, violent, immoral, lazy, and selfish, with surprising few exceptions (and the women tend to be smart, wise, and much-beleaguered). While the individual characters and situations don't really cast lasting impressions, the combined effect of the stories does build a fine sense of place and people. Well worth reading if you live in one of the major Nigerian-American communities (Houston, New York, suburban Maryland, etc.) and definitely worth reading if you have an interest in contemporary African literature.