Cruel City tells the story of Banda, a young man torn between village and city, between dreams and doubts in his ability to achieve his ambition to make money and fulfill his ailing mother’s greatest wish: to marry a girl of her liking and settle down. When the novel opens he has left the village for the near-by city, Tanga, to sell his cacao bean harvest to the traders in town. His rebel mentality, combined with his naïveté as regards a complex urban reality, is vividly portrayed as he lives through the eventful two-day visit. His own musings that run like a commentary alongside the circumstances he finds himself in are couched in a descriptive account, context explanation and critique by an omniscient narrator.
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