The South African and UK editions of House of Stone.

Zimbabwean writer Novuyo Rosa Tshuma has a novel out. In House of Stone, she explores family history, colonial Rhodesia, and the birth of modern Zimbabwe. The 400-page book is published in the UK by Atlantic Books and was released on 7 June, 2018. It is forthcoming in South Africa from Penguin SA later in July and in the US from W. W. Norton in January, 2019.

Spanning fifty years in southern Africa, House of Stone has been described as “deeply smart, wildly inventive and often darkly humorous.” The novel comes with blurbs from NoViolet Bulawayo (“Tshuma writes in an arresting and trenchant prose that shows a gifted artist at work”) and What Belongs to You author Garth Greenwell (“Novuyo Tshuma writes with an equal commitment to Joycean formal inventiveness and political conscience, and the result is absolutely thrilling”).

Here is a synopsis on Amazon:

A striking, rambunctious, Tom Ripley-ish debut about cuckoos in the family nest, the death of colonial Rhodesia and the bloody birth of corrupt Zimbabwe.

Bukhosi has gone missing. His father, Abed, and his mother, Agnes, cling to the hope that he has run away, rather than been murdered by government thugs. Only the lodger seems to have any idea. Zamani has lived in the spare room for years now. Quiet, polite, well-read and well-heeled, he’s almost part of the family – but almost isn’t quite good enough for Zamani. Cajoling, coaxing and coercing Abed and Agnes into revealing their sometimes tender, often brutal life stories, Zamani aims to steep himself in borrowed family history, so that he can fully inherit and inhabit its uncertain future.

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Novuyo Rosa Tshuma. Image from Aerodrome.

Novuyo Rosa Tshuma grew up in Zimbabwe and has lived in South Africa and the USA. She is a graduate of the Iowa Writers’ Workshop. Her debut collection of stories, Shadows (Kwela Books, 2013), was awarded the 2014 Herman Charles Bosman Prize and nominated for the 2014 Etisalat Prize. She was included in the Africa39 list of the best African writers under 40. A one-time Magtag Fellow at the MFA Creative Writing Programme at the University of Iowa, Tshuma is presently pursuing her PhD at the University of Houston’s Literature & Creative Writing Programme. Her short fiction has appeared in numerous anthologies.

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