Love in the Time of Globalization

A new novel follows two lovers over three continents

They meet as teenagers, around the same age as Romeo and Juliet. They fall in love. Their families aren't warring, but their love is visa-crossed. When frequent strikes paralyze the university system in Nigeria, Ifemelu gets a scholarship to study in the U.S. Obinze stays behind. He plans to join her once he graduates, but the blond-bearded man at the embassy in Lagos tells him, "Sorry, you don't qualify."

Time was, that would have been the end of it. In migration stories of old--from Sam Selvon's The Lonely Londoners to Jhumpa Lahiri's The Namesake--when emigrants left the formerly colonized world for...

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