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Publisher's Summary

Named a Most Anticipated Book of 2022 by Vulture, Buzzfeed, and Oprah Daily

“Manifoldly clever...brilliant.... This is not ‘Animal Farm.’ Not its remix, nor its translation. ‘Glory’ is its own vivid world, drawn from its own folklore. This is a satire with sharper teeth, angrier, and also very, very funny.” (Violet Kupersmith, The New York Times Book Review)

"Genius." (Number one New York Times best-selling author Jason Reynolds)

From the award-winning author of the Booker Prize finalist We Need New Names, an exhilarating novel about the fall of an oppressive regime, and the chaos and opportunity that rise in its wake.

NoViolet Bulawayo’s bold new novel follows the fall of the Old Horse, the long-serving leader of a fictional country, and the drama that follows for a rumbustious nation of animals on the path to true liberation. Inspired by the unexpected fall by coup in November 2017 of Robert G. Mugabe, Zimbabwe’s president of nearly four decades, Glory shows a country's imploding, narrated by a chorus of animal voices that unveil the ruthlessness required to uphold the illusion of absolute power and the imagination and bulletproof optimism to overthrow it completely. By immersing listeners in the daily lives of a population in upheaval, Bulawayo reveals the dazzling life force and irresistible wit that lie barely concealed beneath the surface of seemingly bleak circumstances.

And at the center of this tumult is Destiny, a young goat who returns to Jidada to bear witness to revolution - and to recount the unofficial history and the potential legacy of the females who have quietly pulled the strings here. The animal kingdom - its connection to our primal responses and its resonance in the mythology, folktales, and fairy tales that define cultures the world over - unmasks the surreality of contemporary global politics to help us understand our world more clearly, even as Bulawayo plucks us right out of it.

Although Zimbabwe is the immediate inspiration for this thrilling story, Glory was written in a time of global clamor, with resistance movements across the world challenging different forms of oppression. Thus it often feels like Bulawayo captures several places in one blockbuster allegory, crystallizing a turning point in history with the texture and nuance that only the greatest fiction can.

©2022 NoViolet Bulawayo (P)2022 Penguin Audio

Editor's Pick

An animal tale that’s distinctly human
It was immediately evident from her arresting 2013 debut, We Need New Names, that NoViolet Bulawayo is the kind of writer sure to leave a massive impact on the literary world. She wields a knack for blending stark realities with a kind of near-magic lyricism, a skill that again proves effective in her sophomore novel, Glory. Sharply satirical and relentlessly incisive, this allegorical creature fable—a sort of spiritual successor to George Orwell’s classic Animal Farm—serves as both a deft, clever exploration of the 2017 coup in Zimbabwe that saw the fall of longtime leader Robert Mugabe and an ultimately hopeful look at the power held by ordinary folks in the face of tyranny. And there’s no one better to bring this skewering of the global political landscape to life than actress Chipo Chung, whose laudable performance adds a layer of depth and emotional magnitude to this already impactful novel. —Alanna M., Audible Editor

What listeners say about Glory

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couldn't believe what I was reading,...

I pushed through it to the end. Could have done without 3/4 of book. Redundant!

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I am of two minds

Told through a cast of animals, the book is set against the thinly fictionalized backdrop of recent Zimbabwean history of, a topic about which I have a keen interest. It alternately details the corruption, venality and violence of its leaders and the sad plight of its ordinary citizens. It also takes swipes at western colonization, Chinese bribery, and a recent, unnamed American president portrayed as a tweeting baboon. And it ends with something of a call to arms.

I almost quit this book--more than once. But I persevered because the book is full of little gems. These high points are sometimes satiric and sometimes deeply moving. Too bad that those gems are too often buried in an overly long, repetitive, peripatetic story that lacks a central protagonist to drive it forward.

A word about the narration: Ms Chung is marvelous, right up there with my favorite performance: Perdita Weeks reading "Circe." Paradoxically, though, I don't recommend listening. It's hard to follow the moving pieces of the storyline and all the characters with their unfamiliar Zimbabwean names without the text to scroll back through. Plus, there are many instances where sentences or phrases are repeated for up to a minute. I get the point, but I would like to have had the opportunity to move on without listening to the entirety of these passages. The book might be better to read.

Bottom line: I really wanted to like this book and entered it optimistically. But I can't enthusiastically recommend it.