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“I am a man on a mission. A vocation, call it, to remake the past, and a wish to fashion all that has been into being and becoming.”
So says Zamani, the enigmatic and erudite lodger in Abednego and Agnes Mlambo’s home in Bulawayo, Zimbabwe. Bukhosi, the Mlambo’s teenage son, has gone missing, and his parents fear the worst—and most likely—possibility: that he has been disappeared by the state police. Zamani, preternaturally helpful and almost a part of the family, seems to be the Mlambos’ last, best hope of finding their son. But almost isn't quite enough for Zamani. As he cajoles, coaxes and coerces his hosts into revealing their sometimes tender, sometimes brutal life stories, Zamani steeps himself in borrowed family history, keenly aware that the one who controls the narrative will inherit the future.
Spanning fifty tumultuous years in southern Africa, House of Stone is a deeply smart, wildly inventive and often darkly humorous novel about cuckoos in the family nest and the murderous need to belong. Bursting with wit, rage and seduction, the prodigiously talented Novuyo Rosa Tshuma prosecutes the past and celebrates those on the wrong side of history in this mad and glorious epic about the death of colonial Rhodesia and the bloody birth of modern Zimbabwe.
"An enthralling novel that has it all: pathos, humour, and an insightful engagement with the history of Zimbabwe. With audacious style, Tshuma manages to step over the pitfalls that would swallow a lesser talent, and in so doing announces herself as a huge talent." - Brian Chikwava, author of Harare North
"Tshuma's writing is smart, original, feisty, brutal and gorgeous. She hits the perfect note on every single page in this gripping novel about history, belonging and power. This is the work of an incredible, incredible talent" - Chika Unigwe, author of On Black Sisters' Street
"Novuyo Tshuma writes with an equal commitment to Joycean formal inventiveness and political conscience, and the result is absolutely thrilling." - Garth Greenwell, author of What Belongs to You
"Tshuma is our Zamani—feeding us the sweet nectar of historic lyricism, of which we can't get enough." - Books and Rhymes
" an astounding tapestry of national, familial and personal histories, woven together in one seamless narrative." - Beth Cochrane, The Skinny
"It is rare to encounter a character who is as terrifying as the above quoted Black Jesus, Tshuma’s masterful creation of inhumane terror." - Tommi Laine, Helsinki Book Review
"This stunning novel weaves together the personal and national history in a compelling narrative about the bloody birth of modern Zimbabwe." - Rabeea Saleem, Book Riot