We Need New Names by NoViolet Bulawayo

Mike’s review

“She says it’s the least we can do because we are all dirty sinners and we are the ones for whom Jesus Christ gave his life.”

I wish I could believe again.


“I’ve never really see or felt the spirit myself to say if it’s true or people are just lying, which is what adults will do sometimes because they are adults.” Simple worldview of a child. Adults lie to children to “protect” them, in general. This sentence captures that dynamic perfectly, better than I could think possible. This isn’t something I’ve ever thought about before and now it’s elucidated perfectly, forever. Words.


“like the disciples–Simon, Peter, Andrew, I don’t know the rest, maybe if they had better names I’d remember them all.” Names are a constant problem for me and Zimbabwe-based names aren’t proving to be so difficult thus far, but now we’re only traveling in a group, where individual traits aren’t as important. We’ll see if the group splits up if I can follow and remember any individual traits set up thus far.

And I don’t know the disciples names either. But Simon and Andrew can’t be right, right?


I took a break, but the U.S. section seems to come on very suddenly, with no real lead-up.


“One part is yearning for my friends; the other doesn’t know how to connect with them anymore, as if they are people I’ve never met.”

Moving was the best and worst thing I’ve ever done.


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