An entertaining assortment and also a perplexing one. What’s the point of navigating this jumble? Why ask us to go on this Wonderland bumper car ride? The reader’s impatience begins to take hold, and then we realize: Basra is making a magnificent attempt to help us understand the mixture of optimism, self-defense, hope and delusion that Happy needs to make the monumental choice of whether or not to leave his home ... Basra’s too smart to think she can explain to us 'the immigration situation' in one novel. But she does want us to feel Happy’s plight, and to share her anger at the dehumanizing methods by which our capitalist systems exploit migrant labor ... Indelible.
First-time novelist Basra delivers a damning indictment of capitalism, a system that swallows the global poor whole and spits out wasted humans. At the same time, Basra maintains a light touch; the novel wears its burdens with good humor.