Global release of Born a Crime by Trevor Noah

Tuesday, 15 November, marks the global release of Born a Crime and Other Stories by Trevor Noah, South Africa’s internationally renowned comedian. Subtitled in other countries as Stories from a South African Childhood, Pan Macmillan is excited to be the publisher of Trevor Noah’s memoir in our complicated and remarkable country that forms the backdrop to this moving and personal collection.



Born a Crime is not about Trevor Noah of The Daily Show in the US fame. The show is not even mentioned. Instead, this is a moving, intimate story of growing up in South Africa from 1984. It stands as an archetypal rite-of-passage and coming-to-maturity tale, with unflinching and vivid accounts of home and school life in township and city, domestic violence, enterprising young men in Alex scrabbling to make the barest of livings, and the optimism, endurance and faith of Nombuyiselo (She Who Gives Back) Noah.“ – Mail & Guardian


“Noah’s not the main character in his own story—his mother is the constant. Foe of the status quo, her presence looms large over every page whether she’s mentioned or not, and by the end, Noah lovingly makes clear that this book belongs to her… this isn’t one of those comedian-penned essay collections where the yuks jump out at sitcom speeds. Yet there’s still plenty of humor; Noah proves to be a gifted storyteller, able to deftly lace his poignant tales with amusing irony.” – Entertainment Weekly


The Daily Show host, born to a black mother and a white father, was a living, breathing ‘crime’ growing up in apartheid South Africa. His story of surviving – and thriving – is mind-blowing AF.” – Cosmopolitan USA


“[W]itty and revealing … Noah’s story is the story of modern South Africa; his formative years were shaped by poverty, injustice, and violence. Noah is quick with a disarming joke, and he skillfully integrates the parallel narratives via interstitial asides between chapters to explain the finer details of African culture and history for the uninformed.” – Publishers Weekly


“[A] substantial collection of staggering personal essays … Incisive, funny, and vivid, these true tales are anchored to his portrait of his courageous, rebellious, and religious mother … [Trevor Noah’s] electrifying memoir sparkles with funny stories … and his candid and compassionate essays deepen our perception of the complexities of race, gender, and class.” – Booklist

“A gritty memoir … studded with insight and provocative social criticism … with flashes of brilliant storytelling and acute observations.” – Kirkus Reviews


The Atlantic interviewed Trevor Noah.


Stephen Colbert, host of The Late Show, interviewed Trevor Noah. The interview was picked up by Salon.

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