Thursday, January 10, 2008

On a recommendation spree!!

Hey there folks! Hows life treatin ya?

Well I know I have not been very active lately, but I am here to make up for it!
Here is my next update... I have seen and read and experienced a few things recently, would like to share my experiences and view with you about the same!

Book review - Half of a Yellow Sun - Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie

This is a novel based in the 1960's in Nigeria, when a civil war was waged, and a new state called Biafra was created, albeit only for a few years. The novel traces the life and times of the people before, during, and after the war. Though the characters are fictional, the situation is very real. The prosperity before the coup, the struggling years when Biafra was formed, and the bloody end to it all, when Biafra ceased to exist. The main characters, though fictional, are etched out in flesh so well, they are almost real. Maybe they are, for many people went through what they did during the 60's. Though the novel covers almost a decade, it details the situation and the Nigerian culture and its people well, without being boring or wordy.

Chimamanda is a young Nigerian woman, educated in USA, and has done a wonderful job with the book. Even though she was born much after the war, one can feel that she has done her home work of getting the facts correct. She has captured the experiences of her friends and family who went through the war times very well in her story. The flow of the book is smooth, it is very readable and quite unputdownable. Complex situations and emotions have been brought alive by using simple words. The story has everything: love, hatred, betrayal, violence, kindness... many a relationship has been explored in depth - mother-daughter, father-daughter, sisters, man-woman, servant-master... It is a pleasure to read about Africa, to learn about its culture and people. And somewhere, to think... this is so similar to my life, my city, my country, my people. The trials and tribulations, the way we live and eat, our joys and sorrows... you can relate to all of that and more in this book as if it were your own.

Hats off to Adichie, she deserved the award for this book. It will make many a people aware of the atrocities during war times, and help us understand and empathize with those struggling with the same today. In the past few months, I have come across many recommended books, but have not found the enchantment in them to keep me hooked on. This lady, sure is a magician, for she knows how to weave magic into words! A must read for all book lovers.


Yashika Totlani said...

Is this an actual review for a magazine(excluding a line or two) :O ?? Anyway... i know you recommended this book to me a long time back, but im yet to pick it up n read it. The post sure reignited the desire to lay my hands on it asap :)

More when im on an equal pedestal to comment... keep watching out for this space...

p.s. i like books which deal with other cultures n countries too... provide useful insights.

* to be continued *

Sugar&Spice said...

do let me know if u ever get around to finish reading this book :)