Friday, September 14, 2012

Rachel's Review of Half of a Yellow Sun

Orange Prize 2007: Half of a Yellow Sun, by Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie 

My Review 5/5 stars
Half of a Yellow Sun takes place in Nigeria during the Nigeria/Biafa civil war. The narrative follows 3 characters: Ugwu, a village boy who is taken in by some politically-inclined academics as a house boy; Olanna, Ugwu's mistress and a rich heiress; and Richard, a British expat who desperately wants to be accepted by the Biafrans as one of them. The stories of these three characters are superbly and tragically woven together on a backdrop of war, racial hatred, and famine. This is one of the most impressive books I've read in quite a while. The characters were so deep that I felt I knew them. The events described had an eerie realism to them that comes from the author's intimate knowledge of the history and people. This is one of those books that makes you feel like every incident described is important and well-planned. This is a story not only of war, but of people--their dreams, their loves, their fears, their strengths and weaknesses. Half of a Yellow Sun is a must-read for anyone interested in international literature.

This review is reposted from my blog: Resistance is Futile.


Laura said...

Hi Rachel, it's nice to see you on this blog too ! The Booker and Orange are my two favorite literary prizes. And this book has a special place in my heart, because it's the one that really made me take notice of the Orange Prize. I'm enjoying all your reviews!

Rachel said...

Hi Laura! I think this book was the most powerful book I've read all year. It makes me eager for Chinua Achebe's new book "There Was a Country: A Personal History of Biafra," which is coming out in October. I plan on reading it in December. :)

Trish said...

I have this on my TBR list and I'm quite looking forward to reading it.