One of the comedy world's fastest-rising stars tells his wild coming-of-age story during the twilight of apartheid in South Africa and the tumultuous days of freedom that followed. Noah provides something deeper than traditional memoirists: powerfully funny observations about how farcical political and social systems play out in our lives.
Trevor Noah is the host of The Daily Show with Trevor Noah, where he gleefully provides America with its nightly dose of serrated satire. He is a light-footed but cutting observer of the relentless absurdities of politics, nationalism, and race - and in particular the craziness of his own young life, which he's lived at the intersections of culture and history.
In his first book, Noah tells his coming-of-age story with his larger-than-life mother during the last gasps of apartheid-era South Africa and the turbulent years that followed. Noah was born illegal - the son of a white Dutch father and a black Xhosa mother, who had to pretend to be his nanny or his father's servant in the brief moments when the family came together. His brilliantly eccentric mother loomed over his life - a comically zealous Christian (they went to church six days a week and three times on Sunday), a savvy hustler who kept food on their table during rough times, and an aggressively involved, if often seriously misguided, parent who set Noah on his bumpy path to stardom.
The stories Noah tells are sometimes dark, occasionally bizarre, frequently tender, and always hilarious - whether he's subsisting on caterpillars during months of extreme poverty or making comically pitiful attempts at teenage romance in a color-obsessed world; whether he's being thrown into jail as the hapless fall guy for a crime he didn't commit or being thrown by his mother from a speeding car driven by murderous gangsters.
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The narration is exemplary. He is a chameleon and his command of language gives the narrative so much texture.
The breadth and variety of sound is staggering. The are so many characters each with there own voice and language. It is a tour de force of story telling.
The story, in and of itself, is history, humor, and horror and at the end you will be uplifted.
Wow. Just Wow.
Wonderful and engaging story, an eloquent and fluent reading by the author (I've loved hearing Trevor Noah speak since the first time I saw him on television), and very educational at the same time. However, I really want to know the story of how he ended up in America as the host of The Daily Show. He touches on the beginnings of his entertainment career in this book, but the main story is, as the title suggests, focused in his early life - from birth until early adulthood.... so I'm waiting Mr. Noah!!! I'm waiting for more of your seamlessly enchanting story telling!!! 😬
As a Trevor Noah fan I had high expectations of this book. I expected it to be intelligently funny and charming. I didn't expect it to captivate me in the way it did. His true understanding of human nature shines through as he tells his tragic story.
I've been listening to this every minute I could since it came out. This is an incredible autobiography, and you will get your Trevor Noah laughs. But moreover, it's a brilliant lesson on the realities of apartheid, poverty, misogyny, domestic abuse, and more. I guarantee you will have numerous moments of pausing to digest some truly incredible insights, especially if you're privileged in your culture (::ahem:: if you're white). Apartheid, especially, I didn't know nearly enough about. I truly appreciate the stories told even just for that.
The author manages to take into account that much of his audience will not understand the cultures he grew up around, and it feels now that I not only know the author's roots, but that I have a mental landscape of South Africa that never existed for me before.
If you know Trevor Noah's work from The Daily Show, you'll know he doesn't miss a moment to reflect on the nuances, the ironies, and himself.
Very well done!!
I never write reviews but this was literally the best autobiography I've read. I finished it in one day. I frequently read autobiographies. If you want something that is warm and fuzzy, that helps you feel all is right with the world, this is not it. If you are willing to listen to a young man, wise beyond his years, explain the complexities of this thing called life with the eloquence and insight of a the most expensive shrinks out there, then this book is for you. He has caused me to reflect on my life in a way I am not able to express in words.
Sure, I'd love to hear your story....
Yes, I said it. The best book this year. Funny, poignant, historical, happy, and perfect. Yes, it is the story of Trevor, but it is so much more. It is the story of a place and a time that while I thought I understood, I didn't. It's just amazing that this is the story of a YOUNG man. How can this all have happened such a short time ago? Told with such wit and interest this is really the story of a woman who made her own way and taught her child to do the same. So enjoyable. The perfect book.
Trevor has put his audience in bodycam in order for them to understand that oppression come in all different forms and countries. He used language to pay the tolls of the bridges that he need to cross in his life
As an artist I spend a lot of time in the studio. Audio books give me a chance to keep up on my reading while I create.
Trevor Noah is a gifted man. His descriptions of his life in South Africa will take you right there, it will put you in his shoes. I enjoyed the description of his mother and was impressed by Trevor's ability to create each character from his Gran to his Swiss father and all kinds of African languages in between. If we all had mothers that saw so clearly the world would be a much better place! I would give this my highest recommendation🌟🌟🌟🌟🌟
Loved it. This helps understand Trevor's comedic perspective. He's definitely a chameleon and a hard worker. Wish him all the best.
I learned so much about South Africa from this book. It was extremely enjoyable to listen to. I had known the basic facts about apartide, like black people weren't treated fairly, and Nelson Mandela ended it. This book provides so many details a out the effects of apartide and the aftermath of it. This is not a comedy, although it has a few funny chapters. I think anyone who reads or listens to this will be a better person for having done so. I loved it.
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