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Summary

"A stranger could drive through Miguel Street and just say 'Slum!' because he could see no more." But to its residents, this derelict corner of Trinidad's capital is a complete world, where everybody is quite different from everybody else. There's Popo the carpenter, who neglects his livelihood to build "the thing without a name". There's Man-man, who goes from running for public office to staging his own crucifixion, and the dreaded Big Foot, the bully with glass tear ducts. There's the lovely Mrs. Hereira, in thrall to her monstrous husband. In this tender, funny early novel, V. S. Naipaul renders their lives (and the legends their neighbors construct around them) with Dickensian verve and Chekhovian compassion.

Set during World War II and narrated by an unnamed - but precociously observant - neighborhood boy, Miguel Street is a work of mercurial mood shifts, by turns sweetly melancholy and anarchically funny. It overflows with life on every page.

©2010 V. S. Naipaul (P)2018 Blackstone Audio, Inc.

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  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
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Profile Image for anton
  • anton
  • 27-10-18

Mixed feelings.

Everything except the conversations were enjoyable. I'm from Trinidad and the person reading the dialogue read them with a Guyanese accent. It took alot of the story away and ruined my overall experience. Thank you for your efforts though.

6 people found this helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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Profile Image for Yas
  • Yas
  • 06-11-20

Vintage Naipaul

The remarkable descriptive talent of @vsnaipaul is at its best in "Miguel Street". It is a Trinidadian story of daily people & few writers match Naipaul's ability in telling the story of common folks with such sincere clarity.

2 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
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  • Candice R
  • 28-09-20

I really enjoyed this book

I noticed right off,the narrator is not Trinidadian and was bahamian! which process right cus I then looked him up on Google. but that may have been my bias. but great stories. it was fun to listen to and I laughed and felt sad at some times where I identified with the characters. this was definitely a better Naipaul for me.

2 people found this helpful

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  • Simone D.
  • 06-10-18

Needs a Trini narrator

I had expected a Trinidadian narrator for this iconic expose on wartime Trinidad.
I think some of the dialogue suffered because of the narrator's strong Bahamian accent.

4 people found this helpful

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  • Reader
  • 15-06-21

Fantastic reader!

A charming set of stories comprising the coming of age of a young boy in Trinidad.

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  • GenericEpi0387
  • 09-06-21

“Never fraid, go brave boy!”

~Hat

Need I say more about this brilliant window, in the house of the Melville from Trinidad!

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  • Akilla Peters
  • 20-05-21

A great book

I had this book to read in high school and it became a personal favorite. The characters are relatable especially if you’re from the Caribbean. A book I can read every couple of years

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  • Anonymous User
  • 05-05-21

Hats off!👏🏽👏🏽

I was completely vested in Miguel street. I could picture it, smell the various scents of food, fruit and fields. I loved the characters and the strange friendships. My most favorite character after Hat was the mother. The writer’s style is amazing. Creative use of descriptive words. Very comical too. I was in stitches. Some themes are very difficult to contend with today esp on gender-based violence, but given the era, it was their reality. Perfect performance- accent, sentiment and emotion! Well done all around!

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  • Jeremy Mumford
  • 19-04-21

Beautiful performance

These stories about growing up in a poor neighborhood in Port of Spain are evocative. In this street, at least in Naipaul’s memory, there is very little sense of difference between Black and Asian; at times the poverty and violence are romanticized, especially in the voice of the narrator’s mentor Hat. The narrator does a great job, especially on the dialogue.

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  • sushilla
  • 02-03-21

Good story. Narration doesn’t do It justice.

The book is as good as I remember and you get a good history lesson. However I’m disappointed in the narration. It butchers the Trini accent.