Skip to content

The List Book Summary

A Novel

by Yomi Adegoke

The List

A Novel

Yomi Adegoke


The List is a gripping and thought-provoking novel that delves into the complexities of online shaming, social media’s impact on reputation, and the struggle for redemption in a hyperconnected world. When Ola Olajide, a high-profile journalist, finds her name on a viral list exposing alleged sexual abusers, her life and career are thrown into turmoil. As she fights to clear her name and uncover the anonymous creator of the list, the novel explores themes of justice, truth, and the power of online platforms to shape narratives and destroy lives.

Table of contents

Open Table of contents

Author & Writing Background

Yomi Adegoke is a British journalist, author, and co-founder of the women’s platform The Grapevine. Known for her insightful commentary on race, feminism, and popular culture, Adegoke’s writing has appeared in various publications, including The Guardian, Vogue, and The Independent. The List is her debut novel, drawing upon her understanding of contemporary social issues and the digital landscape.

Key Takeaways

Online Shaming and Cancel Culture

The novel explores the dark side of social media, where accusations can spread rapidly and individuals are subjected to public scrutiny and condemnation without due process. It raises questions about the ethics of online shaming and the potential for irreversible damage to reputations.

Impact on Mental Health and Relationships

The List delves into the psychological toll of online harassment and the devastating consequences it can have on individuals’ mental health, careers, and personal relationships. Ola’s journey highlights the feelings of isolation, fear, and vulnerability that victims of online shaming experience.

Power of Anonymity and Social Media Algorithms

The novel explores the role of anonymity in online platforms, which can empower individuals to make accusations without accountability. It also examines how social media algorithms can amplify harmful content and contribute to the rapid spread of misinformation.

Gender and Racial Dynamics

The List touches upon the intersection of gender and race in online harassment, highlighting how women of color often face disproportionate targeting and scrutiny. Ola’s experiences as a Black woman navigating a predominantly white industry add another layer of complexity to the narrative.

Justice and Due Process

The novel raises questions about justice and due process in the digital age, where accusations can have severe consequences even if they are ultimately proven false. It explores the challenges of seeking accountability and clearing one’s name in a system that often prioritizes speed over accuracy.

Media and Public Opinion

The List examines the role of traditional and social media in shaping public opinion and influencing the court of public opinion. It highlights the power of narratives and the challenges of controlling information in a digital world.

Redemption and Forgiveness

Despite the devastating consequences of being on the list, the novel also explores the possibility of redemption and forgiveness. Ola’s journey towards reclaiming her narrative and rebuilding her life offers a glimmer of hope amidst the darkness.

Truth and Accountability

Ultimately, The List is a story about the pursuit of truth and accountability. It emphasizes the importance of seeking justice while also acknowledging the complexities and nuances of human behavior and the challenges of navigating a world where information spreads rapidly and reputations can be easily tarnished.

FAQ about The List

The List Quotes

  • The internet is a place where whispers become shouts, and shouts become deafening roars.
  • Justice is a slow, lumbering beast, but the internet moves at the speed of light.
  • Your reputation is not what you are, but what people think you are.