Katherine Coble's Reviews > Conjure Women

Conjure Women by Afia Atakora
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it was ok

This book is trying too hard to be too many things.
This book is trying too hard to be Toni Morrison and Alice Walker.

The author has a gift, which is why I’ve given 2 stars. She’s got a handle on lyrical narrative that spins a tale.

What she needs is characters that evoke sympathy for reasons other than station. By the 15% point I should have had more to care about than the facts that they are women who are enslaved.

The trouble with trying to have lyrical prose with a narrative that can’t decide if it’s magical realism or unreliable narrator or slavery accounts is that everything is just muddled, confusing and difficult to follow. At times I felt as though I had a head injury. Things are either said eleven times as we weave back and forth or they’re never said at all...to create “mystery”.

I’m frustrated because slavery accounts, herbal working and hedgewitching are core areas of study for me and I thought this book was right up my alley. Instead it took me up a few blind alleys and left too many things unsaid.

If she gets a tighter handle on her work this author can easily be the next Toni Morrison or Alice Walker. She’s that good at lyric prose. But she does need that tighter handle.

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Reading Progress

June 2, 2021 – Started Reading
June 2, 2021 – Shelved
June 3, 2021 – Finished Reading

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