Deana's Reviews > Beasts of No Nation

Beasts of No Nation by Uzodinma Iweala
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Nov 10, 10

bookshelves: 2010, read-friend, 4-5stars
Recommended to Deana by: HLT COE Library
Read from November 06 to 10, 2010, read count: 1

I started this book three or four times and each time read only a page or two before getting frustrated by the language. The book is written in the first person point of view from a child soldier in an unnamed country in Africa. The entire story is written in this dialect with strange word endings and in the present tense "We be marching marching...", "I am not happying..." etc.

But one day I decided to force myself to read the entire first chapter, no matter how difficult the language was. And I did - and I just kept reading, a chapter or two each night. It is a very compelling story, heartbreaking at times, as Agu tries to make sense of the world in which he now lives, telling himself he is not a bad boy even though he is killing other men, women and children, as his friendships and family are lost due to the war, as his Commandant takes advantage of him and the other boys sexually...

I see a lot of people complaining about the ending. I do kind of think the last chapter was unnecessary. Better to leave it with him walking away and leaving it up to the reader to decide what happens to him. But then again, this is one realistic ending and if you read the stuff about the author and why he chose to write about child soldiers in the back of the book, you'll see that this is how he came to know them - meeting them in rehab centers.

Overall, a good book. It gave me an idea of why people might do some of the things they do. It gave me an idea of the land scape in Africa. Most amazing book ever? Probably not. Will the author be able to write another book as goo? I sure hope so!
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11/06/2010 page 74
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