Karson's Reviews > The Famished Road

The Famished Road by Ben Okri
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Jul 09, 2015

it was amazing
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Read in September, 2009

This book was really big! Little words and about 500 pages. The writer has a really unique style. I am sure there is a term for it, but basically he mixes the magical with the practical. One sentence a boy is walking to the store, and the next he is encountering three yellow glowing witches, an old herbalist, a wizard's apprentice and a centaur in a magical forrest. Yeah, it's kind of like that. My description might repel or attract you to the story, but there is a lot more going on in this book than a fun mixture of fantasy and reality. Ultimately this book seems to be about Africa as a nation and how it has evolved throughout history. What it is now and what it should be and how it got to its present state. It is about the ebbs and flows of history. The efforts one generation makes and passes to the next, and the choice to further on previous generations efforts or to turn and try to 'build your own road' so to speak. Okri would say, I think, that the road of history is impoverished and hungry, but the hungrier the road, the more powerful and influential its choices are. While reading this book I often thought about Jesus' statement in his sermon on the mount that 'the meek will inherit the earth.' This book is about upside-down power, and what it means to truly assert yourself in a meaningful way within the context of history.
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