Reader reviews and comments on How to Read the Air, plus links to write your own review.

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

How to Read the Air

by Dinaw Mengestu

How to Read the Air
  • Critics' Opinion:

    Readers' Opinion:

  • First Published:
    Oct 2010, 320 pages
    Oct 2011, 320 pages

  • Rate this book

Book Reviewed by:
Judy Krueger

Buy This Book

About this Book


Page 1 of 1
There is 1 reader review for How to Read the Air
Order Reviews by:

Write your own review!

Power Reviewer Elizabeth (11/07/10)

It started out as not too interesting of a lead in, but it does get better as you share the characters' lives and see why they ended up the way they did and how the lives of immigrants is not always a pleasant one.

There were a lot of powerful, thought-provoking messages throughout the definitely isn't just a "surface" read.

My rating is a 4/5 for interest and a 5/5 for the author's writing style....he is excellent at character development, scene description, and of course storytelling.

The book began describing a scene of the narrator's parents leaving on a vacation and then moves into his life and the life of his girlfriend who work as a social worker and an attorney in an immigration center. It continues with incidents about their life in and out of the immigration center.

The book goes back and forth describing the narrator's parents and then his life and the problems all of them had with the main focuses being: relationship problems, lack of communication, family, love, and finding out who you really are. The book also followed Jonas through his childhood and talked about how his life was in that house with his parents who really wanted nothing to do with each other....not a pleasant childhood. It also traced the path of his father from Ethopia to the United States.

It was sad hearing what kind of life Jonas' mother had and how they didn't really keep in touch after he was an adult. Also very sad was the description of his relationship with his father and how it completely affected his life. Taken from page 101 concerning his relationship with his father...."and, I realized then that all I had to do to avoid him was blend into the background. That knowledge followed me from there so that eventually I thought of my obscurity as being essential to my survival."
  • Page
  • 1

Support BookBrowse

Become a Member
and discover your next great read!

Join Today!

Editor's Choice

  • Book Jacket: Crossing the Horizon
    Crossing the Horizon
    by Laurie Notaro
    In Crossing the Horizon, Laurie Notaro takes us back to a time when flying was a rare and risky ...
  • Book Jacket
    Auntie Poldi and the Sicilian Lions
    by Mario Giordano
    Munich matron and self-described worldly sophisticate, Isolde Oberreiter, has decided to retire to a...
  • Book Jacket: Of Arms and Artists
    Of Arms and Artists
    by Paul Staiti
    In the late eighteenth-century, the United States of America was still an emerging country, ...
Book Discussions
Book Jacket
The Bone Tree
by Greg Iles

An epic trilogy of blood and race, family and justice.

About the book
Join the discussion!

First Impressions

  • Book Jacket

    Les Parisiennes
    by Anne Sebba

    How the women of Paris lived, loved, and died under Nazi occupation.

    Read Member Reviews

Win this book!
Win The World of Poldark

Win the book & DVD

Enter to win The World of Poldark and the full first series on DVD.


Word Play

Solve this clue:

One S D N M A S

and be entered to win..

Books that     

 & 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.


Free Weekly Newsletter

Keep up with what's happening in the world of books:
Reviews, previews, interviews and more!

Spam Free: Your email is never shared with anyone; opt out any time.