BAD NEWS: Last Journalists in a Dictatorship
Noam Chomsky: “Few people have suffered the hideous fate of Rwandans in the modern era. It is shocking, painful beyond words, to see the darkness settling again in a dystopia that is crushing free expression and individual lives. This searing, evocative account, focusing on young journalists struggling to gain the rights they so richly deserve, provides insights about the human condition that reach far beyond the tragic story of Rwanda.”
The Guardian: "A superb exposé of a dictatorship... an important book... a desolate work, taut prose describing the stifling atmosphere of a nation trapped in fear."
Jon Lee Anderson: "Anjan Sundaram is a keen observer and a fine writer. In Bad News, he has rendered a chilling chronicle of the creeping totalitarianism taking hold in Rwanda that is as disturbing as it is unforgettable."
Aditi Sriram, Washington Post: "Sundaram's exposé is courageous and heartfelt...succinct eloquence."
Laura Seay, Washington Post: "A page-turner that reads like a suspense novel, with a growing sense of dread through a narrative that confirms the reader’s worst fears time and time again."
Frances Harrison, Open magazine: "Sundaram has found something very important to say... a portrait of a post-genocide society, a study of repression and mass denial. It should be mandatory reading."
Sunday Times (UK): "Powerful and shocking memoir...a damning indictment not only of the Rwandan regime, but also the western governments and agencies that have failed to question its practices."
Antony Loewenstein, The Australian: "One of the finest works of reportage in living memory."
Nilanjana Roy, Business Standard: "A classic of journalism, an unforgettable account of the machinery that is necessary to sustain a republic of fear."
Financial Times: "Sundaram's insights are harrowing, his narrative fast paced and immediate."
African Arguments, Royal African Society: "Sundaram’s portrayal of this repressive society is spot on... Sundaram has pulled back a weighty veil and exposed layers of manipulation that are – for most of us – almost impossible to see. A book... with the potential to alter our understanding of a place and its history."
San Francisco Chronicle: "an important cultural document... a searing illustration of the dangers associated with newsgathering in an authoritarian state, and a paean to those courageous enough to practice it in such dire circumstances."
National Post: "Eerily similar to...George Orwell's 1984. It may not be as glamorous or feel as optimistic as the recently released film Spotlight, but it highlights injustice and the importance of journalism against powerful organizations with all the same urgency."
South China Morning Post: "The theatre and fear of dictatorship have escalated. Sound familiar?"
Megha Majumdar, Lithub: "Sundaram’s extraordinary reporting returns political stakes to literary ambition."
Nairobi Law Review: "A book worth reading for many reasons."
Sydney Morning Herald: "Written with terrifying crispness, this surreal thriller captures the shocking absurdities of life."
Pittsburgh Post-Gazette: "Reveals... on a person-to-person level, leading the reader to a heightened recognition of how fear can be used to seep into any society, subtly at first, and then malignantly transformative."
Waterstones UK: "The incredible story of the rise of dictatorship and the fall of open speech as told by the last free journalists to remain in Rwanda."
Richard Poplak, Africa in Fact: "The best book on Rwanda by an outsider."
Shelf Awareness: "Bad News is an attempt to shed light on a side of Rwanda hidden to most foreigners, but also a memorial to those who give their lives, well-being and even their sanity to the cause of free speech."
Booklist: "A powerful account of a nation 20 years later, still trying to recover from shocking genocide"
Kirkus: "Sundaram's talents show in his creation of an atmosphere of paranoia and dread... A chilling account of reporters in danger that heightens awareness of the importance of a free press."
Publishers Weekly: "An important book for students of political science, modern history, and journalism."
Foreign Affairs: "An unsettling account of journalists under fire."
A superb exposé of a dictatorship, The Guardian
A journalist exposes injustice, Washington Post
Sundaram meets the world, LA Review of Books
Powerful and shocking memoir, Sunday Times (UK)
A pean to courageous journalists, San Francisco Chronicle
One of the finest works in living memory, The Australian
Exposing Rwanda's war on journalism, African Arguments
Insights are harrowing, Financial Times
Harrowing page turner, Washington Post
Inside the republic of fear, Business Standard
Troubling account, Irish Times
Should be mandatory reading, Open magazine
The King and his courtiers, The Lancet
What is really bad news, The Hindu
Half truth and reconciliation, Lithub
Plenty of Bad News for African journos, Nairobi Law Review
Dictatorship from the inside, South China Morning Post
Does book expose lack of media freedom?, East African
Free press and dissent are crushed, National Post
Surreal thriller, Sydney Morning Herald
Pulling Back the Curtain, Pittsburgh Post-Gazette
Theatre and fear, South China Morning Post
Sundaram's account eerily similar to Orwell, National Post
Trouble for Rwanda's future, Toronto Star
The written word has died here, Telegraph India
An unsettling account, Foreign Affairs
Exposing Rwanda's facade, Macleans
An important book, Publishers Weekly
Slecht nieuws iut Rwanda, De Standaard
A chilling account, Kirkus
Shutting down the Media, Africa in Fact
A vivid portrait of Rwanda, Everyday ebook
Heroes and victims in Rwanda, Shelf Awareness
A brilliant young writer, Times Higher Education