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Buried Beneath the Baobab Tree

4.27  ·  Rating details ·  2,218 ratings  ·  462 reviews
On April 14, 2014, Boko Haram kidnapped 276 girls. Some managed to escape. Many are still missing. A new pair of shoes, a university degree, a husband—these are the things that a girl dreams of in a Nigerian village. A girl who works hard in school and to help her family. A girl with a future as bright as live coals in the dark. And with a government scholarship right arou ...more
Paperback, 339 pages
Published November 17th 2019 by Masobe Books (first published September 4th 2018)
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Average rating 4.27  · 
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 ·  2,218 ratings  ·  462 reviews


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Kaya
May 21, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Y'all, I'm shook. This is the kind of story that feels like it should be happening in a completely different time period, not in the present. I don't know how exactly to convey just how hard-hitting this book is but I will try. Also, TRIGGER WARNING for non-graphic sexual violence. 

This book was ADDICTIVE. Like, the short chapters and short length allowed me to fly through this story. But it also allows for savoring it, if you know what I mean.
I love how the author sets everything up - the world
...more
April (Aprilius Maximus)
Sep 06, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2018
Wow, I learnt so much reading this. The world can be such a horrible place :(
Hannah
This is a really powerful story that avoids a lot of clichés we see in most American-penned stories about foreign tragedies, almost certainly because the author is Nigerian, and also because a person who was her partner in research had a deep understanding of what it means to be a white person on the ground who is trying to help but be mindful of her whiteness at the same time, and that came through in the really powerful, hour-long afterword. There is no sensationalizing, no infantilizing of th ...more
Book Concierge
This young-adult novel tells the story of the “stolen girls” of northern Nigeria, where the militant terrorist group Boko Haram has been burning villages, kidnapping the young girls, and slaughtering the rest of the residents.

The author gives the reader a vivid picture of life in a small Nigerian village. The unnamed narrator is a young girl who excels at school, and dreams of new shoes, going to university, marrying a good husband – the kinds of things most girls dream of. She helps her mother
...more
Kelly
Told through vignettes, this book gives voice to the girls who've been kidnapped by the radicalist group Boko Haram in Nigeria. The narrator is an unnamed girl -- later given a name that isn't her birth name by the kidnappers -- and it follows as she pursues her passion for education and feels deeply the crush she has on a local boy. But when Boko Haram charges into the village, she's ripped from her family, taken into their fold, and forced to marry a ban who uses her for her body; she is to be ...more
KC
Kidnapped in the middle of the night by the Boko Haram, a Nigerian terrorist group, young men and young women were ripped from the safety of their homes to be catapulted into a horrifying nightmare. While the boys are whisked away to begin life anew as soldiers, the girls are forced to become wives, religiously convert and submit-comply or be killed. A courageous look at this tragic scenario, collected from countless interviews with the surviving victims.
A Lib Tech Reads


Buried Beneath the Baobab Tree, Adaobi Tricia Nwaubani
Rating: 3.5/5
Release date: September 4, 2018
Note: Special thanks to Harper Collins for providing an ARC for review.

Despite being fully aware of what I was getting myself into with the tragic and outrageous occurrence, I was still caught off-guard by the powerful narrative and careful depictions of the protagonist growing up in a Nigerian village and then thrust into a terrifying nightmare as Boko Haram uprooted her home. I love a good story t
...more
Lara Kareem
Apr 18, 2020 rated it really liked it
Buried beneath the Baobab Tree by Adaobi Tricia Nwaubani is one book that will forever stay with me, it covers the harrowing experience girls who have been captured by the extremist group Boko Haram face. Giving them life, making them more than just a number, stories in the news or movements like Bring Back Our Girls, sharing their stories, making them real people, not just tragic stories that are so out of touch from most of our own realities.

This story isn't for the lightest of hearts because
...more
Carlos
May 11, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I’m glad I read this book, it opened up a perspective that I wasn’t privy too, so many things happen around the world and so many realities that are not our own get ignored that I think for anyone to read this book it is a a great accomplishment on its own . I also agree that not many teens will pick this one on their own and that beyond a “special school project “ this book might get ignored, maybe that’s enough reason for this book to be read by people more.
Tammy
Jan 12, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This is a fictional account based on the Chibok school girls who were kidnapped by Boko Haram in Nigeria in 2014. It's so sad and distributing to think that this happened so recently and that many of the girls are still missing. It was very well written and I thought the author did a good job of helping the reader understand why some of the girls would choose to stay with their kidnappers and not try to escape.

Popsugar 2019 Challenge - A book with a plant in the title or on the cover & A book wr
...more
laurel [the suspected bibliophile]
Trigger Warning: sexual assault, rape, assault, murder, forced starvation, slavery, poverty, suicide bombing, brainwashing, extremist religion

For the Chosen Generation of girls in Nigeria, life appeared to be everything better than what their mothers had had. Now they had a chance to attend university, to wear new, shiny shoes, a decent job, enough food and a husband.

Then Boko Haram came and took it away.
~
Inspired by the abduction of 276 girls a boarding school in Chobik, this story was compiled
...more
Sarah
Jul 30, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: e-arcs
Thank you to Edelweiss for furnishing me with an e-arc of Buried Beneath the Baobab Tree for review and thank you to my friend Sarah for recommending it to me. All opinions are my own.
The purpose of this book is to humanize the Boko Haram crisis in Nigeria through partial fictionalization of actual interviews from the female victims of this terrorist organization. Boko Haram is a group that has caused mass relocations and deaths throughout Nigeria and into the surrounding countries in their att
...more
Elizabeth☮
A book that highlights the horror of being stolen in the middle of the night with little warning or understanding. This is what happens to the young lady at the heart of the story.

I like how the radio segments between chapters indicate what is going on in the wider world.

A quick, but necessary read for young people to be aware of what is happening to young women, so they can advocate for change.
Oyinda
This was so heavy and hard to read. It was heart breaking, gut wrenching, sorrowful, and tear jerking. Based on the tragic kidnapping of the Chibok girls, this was so so much. The Chibok girls were kidnapped in 2014 by Boko Haram, a religious extremist sect. Till date, not all of the girls have been recovered.

This book focuses on Yata, a young school girl with dreams and so much life. Yata is the only daughter, with 4 brothers in a patriarchal society (many instances of this were all over the st
...more
Ms. Yingling
Public library copy



Our main character, an unnamed girl being raised in a Nigerian village with five brothers, has big dreams for herself. She works very hard in school and hopes that she wins a scholarship. She and her best friend Sarah also watch a lot of Nollywood films about young me in arranged marriages to village girls who instead are secretly in love with female students at the university where they study. Sarah seems to just enjoy the romance, but this further motivates our protagonist,
...more
Jen Brodehl
2.5 Stars- I didn’t love the writing style with the very short and choppy chapters. But I did appreciate learning about this horrible event in Nigeria. So devastating. I would’ve liked a story that goes deeper into the details to feel more connected to the characters.
Kaleah
A solid 4 stars! ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️

I had not kept up with the Boko Haram attacks in Nigeria since the Bring Our Girls Back campaign surfaced several years ago. This book, however, prompted me to do some additional research. The men loyal to the Boko Haram movement used tactics of starvation, physical and sexual assault, jealousy, and brainwashing to control the young girls and women they kidnapped, and at times were successful in radicalizing them. They used girls as young as 7 as suicide bombers. They tr
...more
Hannah
(9.4/10) - ⭐⭐⭐⭐.5

Well, ouch.

Based on the real-life experiences of Nigerian girls taken by Boko Haram, Buried Beneath the Baobab Tree centers around an unnamed girl who suffers that same faith.

By not specifying her name or exact age, our protagonist can be any or all of these girls, and it really sets a tone - especially since a whole lot of people have no clue what happened to these women and girls in 2014.

Through short and sober chapters, Nwaubani manages to convey this harrowing story without
...more
Kelly (kellyreadingbooks)
4/5 stars. This follows a young woman captured in Nigeria by a terrorist group. It is haunting and very informative. I did struggle with there being shorter chapters which made a little bit of a struggle to get settled into this truth based story. But I do think it was done purposefully as a lot of this young woman's life felt unreal and not her own during this time, meaning her life felt like it was in bits and pieces. ...more
Susan
Aug 29, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Thank you, Katherine Tegan Publishing, for an ARC for an honest review.
Buried Beneath the Baobab Tree by Adaobi Tricia Nwaubani
will be Released on September 4th, 2018.

Adaobi Tricia Nwaubani was born in Enugu, Nigeria and as of 2015 lived in Lagos, Nigeria. While researching Ms. Nwaubani I noticed something very striking. Of all the essays, letters and work she has done for media outlets such as the BBC and the Guardian (and they took some digging to find) only two focused on her story.

Even her
...more
Richie Partington
Oct 08, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fiction
Richie’s Picks: BURIED BENEATH THE BAOBAB TREE by Adaobi Tricia Nwaubani, HarperCollins/Katherine Tegen Books, September 2018, 336p., ISBN: 978-0-06-269672-4

“Many analysts believe that Boko Haram emerged as a consequence of deep religious and ethnic cleavages that have long troubled Nigeria. The British, during their nearly half century of rule, merged various territories and peoples that had little in common other than geographic proximity. Nigeria comprises nearly 350 ethnic groups, including
...more
FloeticFlo
Apr 21, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Powerful and so, so sad.
The format really helped to emphasize the agony of the story.
Ancillar
I recommend this book with a box of tissues
Leigh Collazo
Hundreds more reviews like this one at MrsReaderPants.

I remember the Nigerian girls’ kidnapping in 2014, but I’ve hardly heard anything about it since then. It turns out, while many girls have been found, 112 kidnapped girls are still missing as of January 2020.

If I, as a 44-year old adult, do not know more information about these girls’ fates, how would teens know anything about it? I was an adult when this happened a few years ago. A 15-year old reader of Buried Beneath the Baobab Tree would h
...more
Agnes Izah
Sep 28, 2020 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Boko Haram, the Infamous extremist group had brought terror, unhappiness, destruction, devastation, insecurity and insurgency to certain Northern states of Nigeria, Niger Republic, Chad and Cameron. It's main aim as at its inception in 2002 was to purify Islam in Northern Nigeria, as such, they were non-violent. The violence, terror and death began in 2009 when Abubakar Shekau took command of the sect from Mohammed Yusuf, after he was summarily executed by the Nigerian Army.

On the night of 14th
...more
Emily
Oct 08, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: favorites
A girl has a family - a mother and a father who want her to continue her education rather than get married young; brothers whom she loves and takes care of, like a good girl does. A girl has friends - both Christian and Muslim; friends whom she walks to and from school with, telling secrets of crushes, riddles, and facts they learned at school. A girl has dreams - getting a scholarship because she's smarter than all the boys, earning her master's degree, making enough money to help her mother b ...more
Laura Jean
Jul 31, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
***SPOILER ALERT***

Wow, this is a tough read, but the authors handled it excellently.

I went into this book not knowing much about Boko Haram except the kidnapping of the girls from Chibok. This book did a wonderful job of explaining what Boko Haram stood for, how they developed, what they were trying to accomplish, and how the rest of Nigeria and other Muslims felt about them.

The authors also did a wonderful job of illustrating how and why some of the kidnapped girls might become radicalized b
...more
Komal
Nov 05, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
What could be the dreams of a young girl who's parents are struggling hard to earn everyday's bread-butter and despite of all the difficulties manages to send her daughter to school?
Her dream is going to University for higher education, landing good job and giving her family good, stable life which they never had and once everything is settled down what she want is to fall in love and get married to her prince charming and live happily ever after!

Instead her family and all the people from her v
...more
AJ Payne
What a great intro to northern Nigeria and the Boko Haram problem for the early teen. I loved the style of each chapter being a short (sometimes only a few sentences) vignette view of a moment in time of the life of the main character. It was a way of telling the story that was extremely effective, in my opinion. It gives the reader a look into the life of the main character and her family and friends that doesn’t get bogged down into a dense narrative - the story just is, with no explanation of ...more
Kap
I don't know how to give a proper review for this book. All the typical "book review" words sound hollow. But I also feel compelled to say something after finishing this book, because Nwaubani imbues so much life and hope and humanity into the narrator. She is a young girl. FUll of hopes and dreams and anxious joy for education. But one night her village is attacked; her father and brothers and killed in front of her and she kidnapped by Boko Haram, an extremist group that speaks in violence and ...more
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Adaobi Tricia Obinne Nwaubani (born in 1976) is a Nigerian novelist, humorist, essayist and journalist. Her debut novel, I Do Not Come to you by Chance, won the 2010 Commonwealth Writers' Prize for Best First Book (Africa), a Betty Trask First Book award,and was named by the Washington Post as one of the Best Books of 2009. Nwaubani is the first contemporary African writer on the global stage to h ...more

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