In a Strange Room is a brilliant, stylish novel of anger and compassion, longing and thwarted desire, and a hauntingly beautiful evocation of life on the road.
In this newest novel from South African writer Damon Galgut, a young loner travels across eastern Africa, France, Greece and India. Unsure what he’s after, and reluctant to return home, he follows the paths of travelers he meets along the way. Treated as a lover, a follower, a guardian, each new encounter—with an enigmatic stranger, a group of careless backpackers, a woman on the verge—leads him closer to confronting his own identity. Traversing the stillness of wilderness and the frenzy of border crossings, every new direction is tinged with surmounting mourning, as he is propelled toward a tragic conclusion.
Damon Galgut was born in Pretoria. His 2003 novel The Good Doctor won the Commonwealth Writers Prize (Africa Region) and was shortlisted for the Man Booker Prize. In a Strange Room (Europa, 2010) was also shortlisted for the Man Booker Prize. In 2021, Galgut won the Booker Prize for The Promise (Europa, 2021). In 2013, Galgut was inducted into the American Academy of Arts and Letters. He lives in Cape Town, South Africa.