Tuesday, July 1, 2014 |
Sexual politics and race are at the centre of Dany Laferrière's provocative debut novel, first published in 1985. A Haitian man living in Montreal wanders the streets, sleeps with white women, and writes to make sense of his life. Bawdy and bold, How to Make Love to a Negro without Getting Tired is an original and compelling work.
"The room is awash in dark sweat. The fly has long since joined his comrades in the great beyond. Above, Beelzebub has been appeased. Green garbage-bags litter the middle of the room, their mouths agape. In a box (Steinberg cardboard special), with no semblance of order: a pair of shoes, a box of Sifto iodized salt, turned-up winter boots, a toothbrush, a tube of toothpaste, books, rolled-up Van Gogh reproductions, pens, a pair of sunglasses, a new ribbon for my old Remington and an alarm clock. Idly, I stow it away in a corner, by the fridge. The sun comes slanting through the window in blades of light."
From How to Make Love to a Negro without Getting Tired by Dany Laferrière, translated by David Homel ©2010. Published by Douglas & McIntyre.