Behold the Dreamers
This is a novel about the “American Dream” and the consequences a young Camaroonian man faces trying to achieve it. It also shows the power of this dream to drive behavior in the face of overwhelming odds against success. Jende is in New York on a work permit, and his girlfriend Neni is here on a student visa. They have a young son, and are determined to see that he has a future in America. Jende works as a chauffeur for a high profile investment broker at Lehman Brothers; the year is 2007. Clark Edwards is living the good life, but sees trouble on the horizon for his firm and struggles to get his point across. His marriage is on rocky ground, his eldest son Vince has disavowed his parents' plans for him, and young Mighty is caught in the middle of all this, relying on the love of Neni, who is temporarily employed by the Edwards. The crash of 2008 upends all their plans, creating an existential crisis for Jende’s young family. The author was born in Cameroon, and this is her debut novel; she is living in New York after studying at Rutgers and Columbia.
"For fans of Americanah and The Lowland comes a debut novel about an immigrant couple striving to get ahead as the Great Recession hits home. With profound empathy, keen insight, and sly wit, Imbolo Mbue has written a compulsively readable story about marriage, class, race, and the trapdoors in the American Dream." Publisher annotation