Amriika is a novel of betrayal, disillusionment, and discovery set in America during three highly charged decades in the nation’s history. In the late sixties, Ramji, a student from Dar es Salaam, East Africa, arrives in an America far different from the one he dreamed about, one caught up in anti-war demonstrations, revolutionary lifestyles, and spiritual quests. As Ramji finds himself pulled by the tumultuous currents of those troubled times, he is swept up in events whose consequences will haunt him for years to come. Decades later in a changed America, having recently left a marriage and a suburban existence, an older Ramji, passionately in love, finds himself drawn into a set of circumstances which hold terrifying reminders of the past and its unanswered questions.
M. G. Vassanji is the author of six previous novels: The Gunny Sack, which won a regional Commonwealth Writers’ Prize; No New Land; The Book of Secrets, which won the very first Giller Prize; Amriika; The In-Between World of Vikram Lall, which also received the Giller Prize; and, most recently, The Assassin’s Song. He is also the author of two short-story collections, a travel memoir about India, and a biography of Mordecai Richler. He lives in Toronto.
“Amriika may be viewed as a classic immigrant story…[which] becomes, among other things, a kind of snapshot of the zeitgeist of the past three decades, a primer on dissident politics, a suspenseful mystery and a love story.” –Montreal Gazette
“A sweeping tale.…The cast of characters is complex, the backdrop rich.…” –National Post
“Combines all of the lyricism of Rushdie with the astute observations of Updike.…” –Halifax Chronicle-Herald
“Compelling and nuanced, rich in period detail and imaginative set-pieces.…” –New Brunswick Telegraph-Journal