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On our Lists this week: Kids See Ghosts, red cotton, and Russian Roulette


Kids See Ghosts by Kid Cudi and Kanye West: I knew Kanye’s rants were a prelude to an album (or, in this case, two). I’m yet to listen to his solo album Ye and I doubt I’ll get to it now-now. But I’ve been needing to hear from Kid Cudi and Kanye as a duo for a while. Their collaboration has yielded the kind of melancholic album I was expecting. It captures the brokenness that millennials identify with. Here, in the world they have created by blending their styles, thoughts aren’t always politically correct, relationships don’t last forever and we make peace with being alone. It’s all pretty sad but it feels realistic. I’m not mad at it — but I’m still not happy with Kanye. (ZH)


red cotton by Vangile Gantsho (Impepho Press): This is a poetry novella dedicated to Gantsho’s parents, but not in the way you think. The poems, which can stand collectively or on their own, assist the reader in addressing the often conditional love that many of us receive from our parents. It’s a beautifully written weapon and cushion that has so far reminded me that I am a flawed human being who was raised by flawed human beings who still don’t have it figured out. I don’t want to oversell it, so I’ll leave it at that. But I know there is more to it, so I’m going in for a second read. (ZH)

Russian Roulette: The Inside Story of Putin’s War on America and the Election of Donald Trump by Michael Isikoff and David Corn (Twelve Books): I barely kept an eye on the 2016 United States presidential election, and was as surprised as the rest of the “liberal media” that the oaf Donald Trump won. When it emerged that there had been all sorts of international computer hackery and skulduggery in the lead-up to the poll, and that there was a Russian connection, I began to try to follow the story. It was hard, though, to connect the dots — especially because, as critic Rebecca Solnit said, the dots were blurring into a blob. In this book, Isikoff and Corn, who were among the first journalists to report on the Russia-related hacks and other compromising operations during the election campaign and once Trump had become president, connect the dots and blobs — and they do a fine job. Russian Roulette (silly title) makes for riveting reading, as compelling as an airport thriller. (SdW)

The lists were compiled by Zaza Hlalethwa and Shaun de Waal

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