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The Belly of the Atlantic Paperback – 4 Sep 2006

4.0 out of 5 stars 3 customer reviews

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Product details

  • Paperback: 256 pages
  • Publisher: Serpent's Tail (4 Sept. 2006)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1852429038
  • ISBN-13: 978-1852429034
  • Product Dimensions: 13 x 1.3 x 19.8 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (3 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 426,723 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Product Description

Review

?Rich in incisive and humorous insights about existing at the bottom of the food chain? Morning Star ?Entertaining? her writing has undeniable power and wit? Independent ?Diome offers many wide, poignant and sometimes inspired epigrammatic observations that skewer a very real sense of immigrant experience? Big Issue ?This lyrical account of the bittersweet nature of emigration is half poetry, half novel? What?s on in London

About the Author

Born in 1968 in Niodior, Senegal, Fatou Diome moved to Strasbourg in 1994. She has taught at Strasbourg University and currently presents a cultural programme on the televison station FR3. She is the author of a collection of short stories called La Preference Nationale. The Belly of the Atlantic is her first novel.


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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
It is a shame that the character of Salie doesn’t come out stronger – or only emerges right at the end. Descriptions of football are unlike anything else I’ve read – a refreshing change from the Roy of the Rovers or Sunday papers style. If only more match reports were like this: “Barthez and Toldo grimly faced each other, and, unlike the fishermen, each of the two goalies was determined to bring home an empty net. Mounted on springs and programmed to block anything that was round, they were as alert as starving tigers, ready to pounce on even a soap bubble. No doubt, those two alone, manning the barricades in May ’68, would have repelled the charges of the mounted police.”
Full review at: http://stevek1889.blogspot.co.uk/2014/06/football-fiction.html
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Format: Paperback
Fatou Diome is a writer I've just discovered and I am already in owe. I love the way she writes (my style tends to be like hers) and she doesn't mind telling what she has to say, without caring if it is politically wrong or not. She talks with the heart and write the same way. I truly like her style. The Belly of the Atlantic was my first book and it meant a lot to me, because I am a foreigner. am not an Expat or an Immigrant. And the reasons that made me come to France are not the same. My life back in Angola wasn't unbearable. I had all the comfort. So it's hard to compare myself to what "Sadie" explains in the book. Still, I understand her when she says "I need Africa and Europe to feel alive and complete. Without the one, the other loses its importance". I had the pleasure to actually see her at the Book Fair of Montpellier in June 2006, and the way she talks just blows me away. She's the kind of woman that "doesn't give a damn", and I hope she keeps that way!
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Format: Paperback
Diome's `TBOTA' is a powerful story about the aspirations of two young Senegalese who have very different ideas about the promises of a better life offered by migration to Europe. One, Salie, lives in Paris, eking out a living that puts her barely above the poverty line. Her life in France is hard and joyless, and she is struggling to keep her head above water in her new world. The other, Madicke, is her younger brother. He lives in the small Senegalese town of Niodior and, like many of the young men living there, dreams of the opportunity to play football in Europe, with the wealth and status that lifestyle brings with it. He is undeterred both by the warnings of his sister, and the tales of hardship and failure brought back by emigrants returning to Niodior, heartbroken and disillusioned. Salie tries to convince Madicke to make a life for himself in Senegal, while he is yearning for Europe.

`TBOTA' examines the harsh realities behind immigration from sub-Saharan Africa to Europe, from the perspective of both someone who is aware of the realities (Salie) and someone who wants to live the dream (Madicke). It is the contrast between the attitudes of these two that makes this a surprisingly powerful read. The language and the story are both very simplistic, but this actually adds weight to the emotional impact of the book, because it does not read as a heavily intellectual examination of migration. Instead it is a simple story of hope and hidden danger, and one that is easy to believe is being repeated day after day in reality. `TBOTA' has apparently caused quite a stir in France, introducing a new voice and perspective on the debate about immigration. I see no reason why it won't do the same for English readers.
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