Jane's Reviews > Half of a Yellow Sun / Americanah / Purple Hibiscus

Half of a Yellow Sun / Americanah / Purple Hibiscus by Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie
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it was amazing


This is the second novel I have read by this very talented author, Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie. I have loved them both. This book concerns a chapter in the history of Nigeria - the Biafran War for independence from Nigeria in 1967-1970. It concerns the lives and fates of twin sisters, raised in comfort and wealth, who become caught up in the war because of their tribal identity (Igbo) and their beliefs. As part of my goal of reading books about Africa in 2015, this book provided me an understanding of the place that tribe plays in the destiny of a country. As one of the characters in this book so clearly stated: "The only authentic identity for the African is the tribe. I'm Nigerian because the white man created Nigeria. I'm black because the white man considered it to be as different from him as possible. But I was Igbo before the white man came"

In all the books I have read about Africa this theme shows up over and over again....the harm that colonial powers did by carving up Africa among themselves without regard to tribal identities. The same thing happened in the Middle East in the early 1900's where Shia and Sunni groups were mixed together in Iraq, etc.

The story about the sisters was very touching as they sought reconciliation from past slights and personality differences. I had a difficullt time keeping track of the many characters in this long novel and had to keep a list of their names and identities as I went along. Some of them turned out to be minor players in the novel while I frequently had to consult my notes to find out who was who. But it was worth the effort to stay involved in this very compelling novel. I highly recommend it!
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Reading Progress

Started Reading
July 18, 2015 – Finished Reading
July 19, 2015 – Shelved

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