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This House Has Fallen: Midnight in Nigeria

3.91 of 5 stars 3.91  ·  rating details  ·  96 ratings  ·  16 reviews
This is an account of a journey into contemporary Africa's most powerful, most corrupt nation. To understand Africa, you have to understand Nigeria, and few Americans understand Nigeria better than Karl Maier. In the tradition of Philip Gourevitch's bestselling We Regret to Inform You and Redmond O'Hanlon's No Mercy, This House Has Fallen is a bracing, disturbing, evocativ ...more
Hardcover, 327 pages
Published December 31st 2000 by PublicAffairs (first published July 2000)
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I grabbed this the same time as Search for Africa:, The: History, Culture, Politics. Unfortunately this one was not nearly as wonderful. And definitely a slog.

I don't have a huge amount of background in West African history/culture and I got out of this book that Nigeria is ... kind of a mess of disparate cultures shoved together. Colonialism seems to have added some to the general mess, but it kind of sounds like it's been that way for quite a while.

There was a lot of recent history and politi
A worthwhile review of Nigeria's recent history and its current political issues, even if it feels a bit dated. The book was written almost 15 years ago, so that's not especially surprising, but it does feel like things have moved on quite a bit regarding Nigeria's politics, specifically where things sit with the civilian government, with the rise of extremist Islamic movements and especially Boko Haram, and more broadly the advances of much of the rest of sub-Saharan Africa over the past fiftee ...more
Great first introduction to Nigerian politics and country in general. It's rather dated now but still great to understand tribal differences, geographical strengths, corruption levels and positioning in Africa up until Obasanjo's term.
David Smith
No single book will help the novice understand Nigeria but this one offers more than most. Possibly the best introduction to why Africa's Big Country has so many challenges, but still manages to stumble along.
I have never had the urge to visit Nigeria. This disturbing book did nothing to change my mind.
Very well written book. The author shows that he understand the country and its people history and politics very well.
If you want to better understand the most populous country in Africa, I strongly advise you to read it.
Oct 04, 2007 chris rated it 5 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: expats traveling to Nigeria
This is a super good review of Nigerian history and politics up to the first election of Obisanjo. If you are traveling to Nigeria, this will be your reference point for all the craziness that ensues.
Pete Williamson
A bit hard to follow, this being my first exposure to all the names and places of Nigeria, but that could also be due to the complexity of Nigeria's history.
Ryan Mcconville
A good in-depth look at Nigeria.
A sobering collection of essays about life in modern Nigeria. As a former resident of Nigeria, I could relate!
informative, depressing, slows down after the first half; still, its always mentioned as a classic
Majekodunmi Oluoye
good book.not completely accurate. a bit tedious towards the end.
"masterly tome on Nigerian politics and society" --
This House Has Fallen by Karl Maier (2002)
Polly Callahan
written by a journalist
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