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Book of the Month: Americanah by Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie

February 12, 2019

 

 

For this month’s book, I picked something that stretched my time management. Americanah by Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie was a bit longer than I had anticipated. But what overcame the length was the writing, because I wanted to linger on the sentences more than usual, to soak in the perspective of an African woman imbedded in American society, to enjoy the almost lyrical patterning of words.

 

Yes, I liked it. A lot.

 

If you check my Goodreads profile, you’ll see I gave it a 5-star rating, something I don’t give often, and at best, usually to a classic. Although at times the story wandered a bit, I couldn’t get over the voice, the uniqueness of the sentences, and the journey of the Ifemelu. I also appreciated the hard look at the American culture.

 

I had only one complaint—the inequality of Obinze’s point of view to Ifemelu’s. Yes, she was the main character, but the two of them were so intertwined, their love story almost as prominent as the story of her growth, that I wanted to hear more from him. I felt betrayed sometimes, thinking “what’s Obinze experiencing,” during the long episodes of Ifemelu’s POV.

 

Even with that, I highly recommend this book. The story engaged me from the beginning, and I wanted to keep seeing the world through both characters’ eyes, especially their perceptions of England and America. I will definitely read more of Adichie’s works and will seek opportunities to hear her speak.

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