Inbetweener 6 Damon Galgut – The Impostor

At the moment i’m nearly ready with Philip Roth’s The Human Stain (there should be a review up by Sunday) but I thought i’d take a tiny break and read The Imposter and I finished it in two hours flat.

My first experience of Galgut was through The Good Doctor, which I felt was quite sinister but a wholly satisfying read. The good news is that The Impostor is even better, it’s Galgut at his peak.

Adam Napier is unemployed and homeless so he escapes from Johannesburg and visits his brother, Gavin in the hope that he’ll help him. Gavin offers Adam an old abandoned house in the middle of nowhere. Adam is pleased and thinks that he will start a new stress free life. This soon comes to an end through two people who step in Adam’s path.

The first one is his eerie neighbour Blom who has a dark past and secondly his old school friend Kenenth Caning, who thrusts Adam into a mess of corruption and bribes. The rest of the novel details Adam’s plight and his attempts to escape out of this new life.

Really this is a book about post Apartheid South Africa. Like Coetzee, Galgut maintains that it is a place of corruption and bribery and a land full of wanton destruction, going under the name of progress. All the characters are product of this new South Africa and Galgut indirectly hints that the country is going down the drain.

The Impostor is a page turner and Galgut has not only mastered his talent for making something creepy and full of suspense, but he has perfected it.  I’m also pleased that this book tallies with Heart of Redness and also states that SOuth Africa and the Xhosa tribe are in danger due to lack of sustainable development.