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Jakarta Post

Patrick Neate, A man with many voices

  • Sara Veal


Jakarta   /   Wed, July 8 2009   /  11:08 am

Patrick Neate has written five novels and won several writing awards, but he never set out to become a novelist. "I still can't quite believe that's what happened and I always have a vague notion that I'm on the verge of getting a proper job. To be honest, I still want to be a footballer ." The Londoner's latest novel, Jerusalem, concludes the loose trilogy that began with Musungu Jim and the Great Chief Tuloko and the Whitbread Award-winning Twelve Bar Blues. The three novels offer a multifaceted exploration of Africa. Musungu Jim focuses on a hapless English gap year student and fictional sub-Saharan banana republic on the verge of revolution. Twelve Bar Blues spans three continents and two centuries, centering on a New Orleans jazz musician and his search for his lost stepsister. So what is Jerusalem about? "About? Do you mean about about? ...