Damon Galgut - The Imposter (3 stars)

Damon Galgut - The Imposter



Damon Galgut is in possession of an astute grasp of human nature and a poetically brusque prose that affords him bleak leanings, coaxing the reader on, almost against their will. There is an underlying malice and tangible tension that hangs over this story of a middle-aged man who rues the loss of his job and city home and sets out for the country on an ill-defined and regrettable chapter of his life, believing he can rekindle the poetic promise of his childhood.

Earlier in his career, Galgut had been accused of failing to engage with the political climate in his native South Africa, a criticism riposted squarely in his Man Booker-shortlisted The Good Doctor and this subsequent novel. Indeed, an acceptance of the ways of the world, the culture of corruption in his country’s new regime and the hollow, opportunistic nature of its perceived progress are themes that weigh heavy on his wannabe poet’s journey.

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