MLA Gold Award Site

BookBrowse Reviews The Names of Things by John Colman Wood

Summary |  Excerpt |  Reviews |  Beyond the book |  Readalikes |  Genres & Themes |  Author Bio

The Names of Things

by John Colman Wood

The Names of Things
  • Critics' Opinion:

    Readers' Opinion:

     Not Yet Rated
  • Paperback:
    Apr 2012, 276 pages

  • Rate this book


Book Reviewed by:
Kim Kovacs

Buy This Book

About this Book

Reviews

BookBrowse:


An elegiac story about coping with loss, set in the Kenyan desert

John Colman Wood's fieldwork on the Gabra nomads of the Chalbi Desert (see "beyond the book") - particularly his knowledge of their death rites - forms the foundation for the anthropologist's first novel, The Names of Things.

Like the author, the novel's protagonist (never identified beyond "he") is also an anthropologist who has studied the Gabra. The plot traces his reflections as he returns to the desert looking for solace following the death of his wife from an unnamed disease she contracted in the Kenyan outback. The book is an exploration of grief, love, and the roles ritual and community can play in coping with overwhelming loss.

The Names of Things is a beautifully written book permeated with a sense of sadness and regret, set against the backdrop of the desolate Kenyan landscape. There are two main reasons why I find myself recommending this novel. First, the author's ...

Members Only

BookBrowse's reviews and "beyond the book" articles are part of the many benefits of membership and, thus, are generally only available to subscribers, including individual members and patrons of libraries that subscribe.

Join Today


Member Login


Library Patrons

Beyond the Book:
  The Gabra People

Support BookBrowse

Become a Member and discover books that entertain, engage & enlighten!

Join Today!

Book Discussion
Book Jacket
Victoria
by Daisy Goodwin

"A hit…The research is impeccable, the attention to detail, perfect." - The Sunday Mirror (UK)

About the book
Join the discussion!

First Impressions

  • Book Jacket

    The Second Mrs. Hockaday
    by Susan Rivers

    A love story, a story of racial divide, and a story of the South as it fell in the war.

    Read Member Reviews

Win this book!
Win No Man's Land

No Man's Land
by Simon Tolkien

Inspired by the experiences of his grandfather, J. R. R. Tolkien, during World War I.

Enter

Editor's Choice

  • Book Jacket: Conclave
    Conclave
    by Robert Harris
    Although best known for his fact-based historical thrillers, in Conclave, best-selling author Robert...
  • Book Jacket: Conclave
    Conclave
    by Robert Harris
    Although best known for his fact-based historical thrillers, in Conclave, best-selling author Robert...
  • Book Jacket: A Question of Mercy
    A Question of Mercy
    by Elizabeth Cox
    Authors leave little gifts for readers, which seem to turn up at the exact right moment. Perhaps a ...

Word Play

Solve this clue:

H W S W T Devil S H A L S

and be entered to win..

Books that     
entertain,
     engage

 & enlighten

Visitors can view some of BookBrowse for free. Full access is for members only.

Join Today!

Your guide toexceptional          books

BookBrowse seeks out and recommends books that we believe to be best in class. Books that will whisk you to faraway places and times, that will expand your mind and challenge you -- the kinds of books you just can't wait to tell your friends about.