About the Book

Broken Glass

Broken Glass

May 2010
Trade Paperback · 176 Pages
$14.95 U.S. · $17.50 CAN
ISBN 9781593762735
Soft Skull Press


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Alain Mabanckou’s riotous new novel centers on the patrons of a run-down bar in the Congo. In a country that appears to have forgotten the importance of remembering, a former schoolteacher and bar regular nicknamed Broken Glass has been elected to record their stories for posterity. But Broken Glass fails spectacularly at staying out of trouble as one denizen after another wants to rewrite history in an attempt at making sure his portrayal will properly reflect their exciting and dynamic lives. Despondent over this apparent triumph of self-delusion over self-awareness, Broken Glass drowns his sorrows in red wine and riffs on the great books of Africa and the West. Brimming with life, death, and literary allusions, Broken Glass is Mabanckou’s finest novel — a mocking satire of the dangers of artistic integrity.

About the Authors

One of Africa’s major writers, Alain Mabanckou is the author of six volumes of poetry and six novels, including African Psycho. He currently lives in California, where he teaches French Literature at UCLA. In 2006, he received the prestigious Prix Renaudot for Memoirs of a Porcupine, forthcoming from Soft Skull Press.