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Transcendent Kingdom Book Cover

Transcendent Kingdom  
by Yaa Gyasi

Alternating between past and present, Gifty, the main character of Yaa Gyasi’s latest novel, reflects on her childhood and family life in Huntsville, Alabama as she works on a PhD in neuroscience at Stanford University.  Now, you may not initially think that following a narrator’s descriptions of her study of mice - their reward-seeking behavior, the neuroscience of depression and addiction - would be riveting and relevant; but, I am here to tell you that this is precisely the case. Here, through this story and its characters, Gyasi takes the reader on a profound, spiritual, and moving consideration of faith in an age of science. There is so much written into Gifty’s story of suffering, salvation, loss and love; most especially Gifty’s desire for answers in a world that doesn’t easily offer them up.

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