How to Read the Air

How to Read the Air Cover

How to Read the Air

By Dinaw Mengestu

Riverhead Books, Paperback, 9781594485398, 320pp.

Publication Date: October 4, 2011

A "beautifully written"* ("New York Times Book Review") novel of redemption by a prize-winning international literary star.

From the acclaimed author of "The Beautiful Things that Heaven Bears" comes a heartbreaking literary masterwork about love, family, and the power of imagination.

Following the death of his father Yosef, Jonas Woldemariam feels compelled to make sense of the volatile generational and cultural ties that have forged him. Leaving behind his marriage and job in New York, he sets out to retrace his mother and father's honeymoon as young Ethiopian immigrants and weave together a family history that will take him from the war-torn country of his parents' youth to a brighter vision of his life in America today. In so doing, he crafts a story- real or invented-that holds the possibility of reconciliation and redemption.

About the Author
Dinaw Mengestu was born in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, in 1978. He is the recipient of a MacArthur Fellowship, a fellowship in fiction from the New York Foundation for the Arts and a Lannan Literary Fellowship, and was named a 20 under 40 writer to watch by "The New Yorker. "Mengestu s writing has appeared in "The New Yorker, Rolling Stone, Harper s, Granta," and other publications. He lives with his family in Washington, D.C."