Diary of a Nigerian Blogger

A Reminiscence of Childhood Memories:Reviewing Trevor Noah’s “Born a Crime”

Title: Born a Crime

Author: Trevor Noah

Genre: Non-fiction

Number of pages: 288

I don’t regret anything I’ve ever done in life,any choice I’ve made. But I’m concerned with regret for the things I didn’t do the choices I didn’t make,the things I didn’t say. We spend so much time being afraid of failure,of rejection….


I first got to know about Born a Crime on Instagram. An influencer had written a review of it. I got more intrigued because everyone was reading it,I mean it was a trending book at the time. I was like “I need to get this book”. I was also curious about this Trevor Noah and why his memoir is popular. I did a little research and found out that it could actually be a good text for my final year long essay. I thought, since it’s a book on racism,it would be great for my research on ‘Postcolonialism ‘.

Trevor Noah is popular for hosting ‘The Daily Show”. I was a bit unsure whether I would like it,but it was quite interesting.

The first thing that got my attention was the ‘Immortality Act of 1927’ which prohibited any sexual relationship between Europeans and ‘natives’,the natives beinvg South Africans.

Trevor was literally born a crime,because he is a product of his parents illegal relationship. Trevor’s mother is a Sounth African,and his father,an European. The book gives an account of his childhood as a child of mixed race,how his mother would hide keep him indoors in order for the European authorities not to find out about him. The consequences of them finding out is that she would be jailed and he would be sent to a home for mixed children.

Trevor Noah also focused on the political and social situation of Apartheid. People were classified into groups,the white people lived in the best environments,the blacks were segregated and confined to a place where resources were limited.

One character Trevor really wrote about is his mother. She is presented as a fiery,courageous and independent woman who would rather live the life she wants even if it means breaking the law. The birth of Trevor was, to her,a way of rebelling against the set rules during Apartheid

Final thoughts..

I would say that this book is an eye opener to Apartheid in South Africa. It is also a feminist book which attempts to reveal the double marginalisation women faced,and are still facing,in a world where patriarchy is the norm.

I was disappointed that the book majorly focused on his childhood, I would have loved to know more about Trevor Noah’s adult life,and his growth to being the host of The Daily Show.

Apart from that,I would recommend this book for entertainment and research.

If you’ve read the book,then you can answer these questions:

  1. Which incident in Trevor’s childhood can you relate to?
  2. What was your first opinion about book,and when did you realise you were totally wrong?
  3. How would you describe Trevor Noah’s mother?
  4. How did you feel when Trevor’s mother got shot?
  5. Do you think the miraculous healing of his mother was real?

Give your thoughts in the comment section

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Anna Dusseau

Sounds really good. I might give it a go as I love autobiographical writing.

Anna Dusseau

This sounds really good. I might give it a go as I love autobiographical writing!


I own the book, but it has always remained in the pending list. I hope to get going soon.