the good book corner

Manuscript help, book reviews and author interviews

Behold the Dreamers by Imbolo Mbue


…In every phone call during the time they were apart she had reminded him of this, of her inability to stop daydreaming about the day she would leave Limbe and be with him in America….A year and a half later now and New York City was her home, a place with all the pleasures she desired….And for the very first time in her life, she had a dream besides marriage and motherhood: to become a pharmacist like the ones everyone respected in Limbe because they handed out health and happiness….

Imbolo Mbue’s debut novel tells the story of Jende Jonga, a Cameroonian immigrant, his wife Neni and their son. A job with  Clark Edwards, a senior executive at Lehman Brothers, promises to make Jende’s dreams of settling in America seem within his reach. Little does he know that his destiny is linked with that of the Edwards family and when things spiral out of control for Clark Edwards, Jende’s life and his dreams also go for a spin. Every family has it’s trials and tribulations, but what holds them together is their love. Neni knows how to support her husband and is capable of going to extreme lengths to fulfill his dream. For her, right and wrong are a man-made concepts. She dreams of a cushioned life for her family, just like that of Clark and Cindy Edwards and their two sons.

The story captivates from the very first page and unlike most immigrant stories, has a happy and hopeful feel to it. Jende and Neni have choices to make and while they find themselves at crossroads more often than not, their niceness shines through. The language used is refined and each character links beautifully with the other. The sub-plots connect plausibly with the main plot and what you get in the end is a very articulate saga of love, loss and dreams.

Do the protagonists let go of their dreams? Is it all worth it? Do they succeed? Read Imbolo Mbue’s debut novel to find out!!!

…We all do what we gotta do to become American…

A very well written debut novel.


About artikaaurorabakshi

Artika Aurora Bakshi Artika Aurora Bakshi is the author of three well-acclaimed children’s books,My Little Sikh Handbook, My Little Sikh Handbook 2: Ardas, My Little Sikh Handbook: Travel Journal, and an anthology of stories, Hold On To Me. Her first story, set in Amritsar, during the pre-Partition period, All She Had Left, was published on Story Mirror. She co-manages, a manuscript help and book review site. Her passion for reading has led her to helping other writers with their manuscripts. She comes from a family of lawyers and has a master’s degree in International Banking & Finance. Currently based in Sri Lanka, she teaches Commerce and History on a part-time basis at an international school and enjoys being part of the literary scene in Sri Lanka. A regular at the Galle Literary Festival and other literary events in Sri Lanka, Artika’s articles and book reviews have featured in the Daily Mirror, Daily News, The Ceylon Chronicle, and various blogs, such as,,, She was actively involved with SAARC Women’s Association of Sri Lanka and was President of the Association in 2016. An avid reader, Artika runs an online book club with a membership base of over 600 members. Her quotes are featured under soul.nightingale on Instagram and on Soul Nightingale by Artika Aurora Bakshi on Facebook. Artika is also working on her fourth children’s book in the My Little Sikh Handbook series and a second anthology of stories for adults. You can reach Artika at .

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This entry was posted on October 21, 2016 by in Book Reviews, Contemporary, Fiction and tagged , , , .
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