Half of a Yellow Sun
With effortless grace, celebrated author Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie illuminates a seminal moment in modern African history: Biafra's impassioned struggle to establish an independent republic in southeastern Nigeria during the late 1960s. We experience this tumultuous decade alongside five unforgettable characters: Ugwu, a th...more
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This book was marvelous. The story just flows for the most part and the language used is so evocative. I’m sure people who have visited or lived in Africa will appreciate the descriptions of African life, African mentality, humour, nature and so on.
I have to admit, I much preferred the first half to ...more
This casual statement he once heard is used as the title of a book written by one of the characters in this novel, in which Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie chronicles the birth, short and tortured life and death of the State of Biafra: born on the 30th of May, 1967 from Nigeria and forcefully annexed back by the parent state, after a bitter war in which a million died, in January 1970.
Most of us, I suspect, do not know about this short-lived country. Even Wikipedia c ...more
Half of a Yellow Sun (related with Biafran flag, look the photo) is a story about birth and short life of Biafra, li ...more
I read only about one-third of this novel. Adichie's (CNA) writing doesn't agree with me at all. And the characters are so flat they should be able to slide under a door trouble-free. The characters don't even bother to play their role with its limited definition. Instead they keep pounding their fists on a table and shouting out what their role is supposed to be: "I am a sardonic bitch.", "I am sooo non-racist you won't even believe it", "blah blah".
Ouch! My head hurts.
One type of characters I ...more
It is not often that a novel comes to hand that has been prized, praised and pre-inflated. Half of a Yellow Sun was in that category when I opened it and began to read. And I was captivated immediately. I read the first hundred pages at a pace, delighting in the ease with which the Chimanada Ngozi Adichie used language to draw me into the middle-class clique centred on the University of Nsukka which provides the core characters of her book. Their infidelities, their ...more
Second read: November 19-23, 2016
My thoughts on this after reading it a second time didn't change much. If anything, it made me love Adichie even more than I already did. This confirmed that she's absolutely one of my all-time favorite authors. She's so observant and able to convey human emotion in such a relatable way, even when describing experiences I have never come close to experiencing. A wonderfully, heartbreaking story and one of my favorite ...more
“If she had died, if Odenigbo and Baby and Ugwu had died, the bunker would still smell like a freshly tilled farm and the sun would still rise and the crickets would still hop around. The war would continue without them. Olanna exhaled, filled with a frothy rage. It was the very sense of being inconsequential that pushed her from extreme fear to extreme fury. She had to matter.”
For the first few pages, this reminded me of a social novel, a novel of manners, like which Adichie demonstrates in Ame ...more
Brilliant book - once again.
"The world was silent when many died. But now it will have to listen, as the dead tell their story from beyond the grave."Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie writes in detail and manages to keep the reader glued to the book. For those who want to understand what the African Renaissance is all about, this is the kind of book that will shed some valuable light on the current challenges being addressed. It is huge, brutal, dangerous and probably nevere ...more
What is amazing about this novel is how Adichie creates a set of characters involved in regular domestic affairs (working, studying, falling in love, being in love, cheating or worried about cheating, finding an identity, growing up, just generally living, etc. etc.) within the conte ...more
Like many African nations colonized by Europeans, its borders had been drawn with little regard for political and cultural realiti ...more
Of children with their hair becoming rust:
Sickly patches nestled on those small heads.
Then falling off, like rotten leaves on dust?
_____ _____ _____ _____
I would have been in grade school, or just entering high school. Adolescent discomfiture was the main thing on my mind. What I knew of the larger world came from photojournalism: Life magazine pictures. Those images, it turns out, were permanent: fire hoses turned on in the South; bombs mushrooming above an ...more
For my review, I have selected a poem featured very near the end of this devastatingly real and haunting novel. Written by the character Okeoma who apparently is based on the real poet Christopher Okigbo.
The World Was Silent When We Died
Did you see photos in sixty-eight
Of Children with their hair becoming rust:
Sickly patches nestled on those small heads,
Then falling off, like rotten leaves on dust?
Imagine children with arms like toothpicks,
With footballs for bellies and skin stretched thin.
It wa ...more
“The war would continue without them. Olanna exhaled, filled with the frothy rage. It was the very sense of being inconsequential that pushed her from extreme fear to extreme fury. She had to matter. She would no longer exist limply, waiting to die.”
Half of a Yellow Sun follows the lives of ordinary people in Nigeria during the 1960s; the time just before the Nigeria-Biafra war and during the war itself. It is an unflinching account of the tolls war takes on regular people. We see good peop ...more
Adichie's novel illuminates the reality and disintegration of Nigerian life in wartime during the 1960s. The Biafran war waged between 1967-70 was Nigeria's politically and ethnically charged battle of North vs South, specifically the southeastern region, where the unsuccessful fight for secession left 1 million civilians dead. Half of a yellow sun describes the ...more
إفريقيا الساحرة , حقا إنها لساحرة , فهى المجتمع الغامض , الجامع لشتى الحضارات والثقافات والثروات الغنية فى خليط ممتع, ولسؤال الأهم , هل يستطيع عمل أدبى ما فى تقديم ذلك السحر ؟ هذا ما ستقابله فى هذا العمل الفريد.
ببساطة : نيجيريا الستينات , بطائفيتها القبيحة المدمرة السافكة للدماء .
رواية واقعية (حقيقية) ليس فقط الانتماء لفن الواقعية كنوع روائى ما , بل هى الواقعية الحية التى تضعك فى قلب ال ...more
Language is a central concern in this book, including the occasional tongue-in-cheek play on words, such as Richard being (emotionally) "stirred" by a ropework pot. I got the sense that the author was almost deliberately deceptive in the simplicity of her language, covering ...more
I had heard so many great reviews, I was worried it wouldn't live up to my high expectations, but I am very happy to report that it has. "Half a Yellow Sun" tells the stories of a cast of intriguing, flawed and very real characters around the years of the Biafran War. I have to admit, this conflict was, shockingly, not one I knew much about. It was not mentioned in my history clas ...more
‘Red was the blood of the siblings massacred in the North, black was for mourning them, green was for the prosperity Biafra would have, and, finally, the half of a yellow sun stood for the glorious future’ --- Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie, Half of a Yellow Sun
The book is based on the Nigeria-Biafra War of 1967-70, when millions of Biafrans died even as the world watched in silence (quite aptly also the title of a book within t ...more
تطل الحرب بوجهها الأشد بشاعة، ووجهها دائما قبيح، غير أنها أشنع عندما تكون حربا غير متكافئة. فبينما يدفع أحد الأطراف ثمنها عرقا ودماءاً، يضحي بأجلها بقوت أطفاله، بدواء والدته، بهنأة نومه وفناء أحباءه، يعتبرها الطرف الآخر مجرد رياض ...more
So this novel did what I love when fiction do - it captured me by it's story while at the same time I learned something new. And even though Adichie didn't dive into the blood and gore of war, she manage to paint a pretty gr ...more
There is Olanna, the daughter of a diplomat and a professor who has just left Lagos to live in the smaller city of Nsukka with Odenigbo, the revolutionary and professor she has fallen in love with. Ugwu is their houseboy who has moved from the village to live and work with them. Richard, the European expatriate and writer, is ...more
Those are my favorite lines in this novel. It is the very essence of this novel and the Biafra war.
Before reading any of Adichie's novels, I was familiar with her due to her feminist reputation. As I sa ...more
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She was born in Enugu, Nigeria, the fifth of six children to Igbo parents. She studied medicine and pharmacy at the University of Nigeria for a year and a half. At nineteen, Chimamanda left for the U.S. to study communication at Drexel Universit ...more