Wednesday, September 7, 2016

Behold the Dreamers

Behold the DreamersJende Jonga, a Cameroonian immigrant living in Harlem, has come to the United States to provide a better life for himself, his wife, Neni, and their six-year-old son. In the fall of 2007, Jende can hardly believe his luck when he lands a job as a chauffeur for Clark Edwards, a senior executive at Lehman Brothers. Clark demands punctuality, discretion, and loyalty—and Jende is eager to please. Clark’s wife, Cindy, even offers Neni temporary work at the Edwardses’ summer home in the Hamptons. With these opportunities, Jende and Neni can at last gain a foothold in America and imagine a brighter future.

However, the world of great power and privilege conceals troubling secrets, and soon Jende and Neni notice cracks in their employers’ fa├žades.

When the financial world is rocked by the collapse of Lehman Brothers, the Jongas are desperate to keep Jende’s job—even as their marriage threatens to fall apart. As all four lives are dramatically upended, Jende and Neni are forced to make an impossible choice.

I am so conflicted about this selection, even as I write this review.  The first two-thirds I was all in and didn't want it to end.  However, there was a shift that ended up leaving me disappointed.  Characters that we had invested in, were just gone.  Jende became a totally different person that I just didn't think accurately portrayed who the author built him to be.  I was suddenly supposed to be invested in something completely different than when I started out and I just felt disappointed.  I wanted more of what I started with and just didn't get that.  On the positive side, the writing read quick and I loved the style.  While the story line was not what I hoped for, the issues this book dealt with are very real and I appreciated how it was handled.    
 * I received this book from the author/publisher in exchange for an honest review *

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