More than you really want to know about Natick, Mass.
The Talking Drum explores intra-racial, class, and cross-cultural tensions, along with the meaning of community and belonging.
The novel explores the profound impact gentrification has on people in many neighborhoods, and the way in which being uprooted affects the fabric of their families, friendships, and emotional well-being. The novel not only explores the immigrant experience, but how the immigrant/African American neighborhood interface leads to friction and tension, a theme also not explored much in current literature involving immigrants. The book is a springboard to an important discussion on race and class differences, the treatment of immigrants, as well as the government’s relationship to society.