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African Fiction - 4 Debut Novels

African Fiction – 4 Debut Novels

Who Fears Death (M)
by Nnedi Okorafor
African Fiction - 4 Debut Novels “In her astonishing debut, Okorafor has created a desolate, postapocalyptic Africa of endless desert, failing technology, superstition, and magic. But life is not without hope. Prophesy speaks of a sorcerer who will change the future, end the wars and slavery, and reunite the people. Onyesonwu is a child of rare talent. Conceived by rape, physically different from her peers, Onyesonwu has the light skin, fair hair, and freckles that traditionally mark her as unworthy, frightening, ugly, and evil. But rather than accepting her outcast role, a defiant Onyesonwu uses her magic to prove herself, avenge her mother’s rape, and lead her people. Verdict Beautifully written, this is dystopian fantasy at its very best. Expertly exploring issues of race, gender, and cultural identity, Okorafor blends future fantasy with the rhythm and feel of African storytelling.” Library Journal
Black Mamba Boy (M)
by Nadifa Mohamed
African Fiction - 4 Debut Novels “Spanning the years 1935-47, this novel opens in Aden, Yemen, where 11-year-old Jama, a wild but smart Somali boy, lives with his mother. They live a hardscrabble existence with unfriendly relatives, having left more sympathetic clan members behind in Hargeisa. After a tragic loss, Jama begins his journey across Africa on a quest to find his father, who left the family years earlier to attempt to earn money. Jama travels mostly by foot, walking over 1000 miles, and we follow him through cities, the desert, and mountains of Africa and across oceans, to Germany and England. This is not a carefree travel adventure; Jama endures extreme hardships, making and losing friends and encountering great brutality and sadness along with incredible generosity and kindness from both strangers and his clan. Verdict A pleasure to read, with descriptive language that allows readers to envision themselves in the story, this novel shows a distinctly non-European way of life in mid-20th-century Africa that is captivating. Highly recommended.” Library Journal

Daughters Who Walk This Path
(M)
by Yejide Kilanko
African Fiction - 4 Debut Novels Daughters Who Walk This Path depicts the dramatic coming of age of Morayo, a spirited and intelligent girl growing up in 1980s Ibadan who is thrust into a web of oppressive silence woven by the adults around her. It’s a legacy of silence many women in Morayo’s family share. Only Aunty Morenike—once protected by her own mother—provides Morayo with a safe home, and a sense of female community which sustains Morayo as she grows into a young woman in bustling, politically charged, often violent Nigeria.” – Publisher

A book that can make you laugh and cry.” – Toronto Star
Sophisticated and beautiful.” – National Post
Morayo’s story is universal and women around the world will relate.” – Winnipeg Free Press

Ancestor Stones (M)
by Aminatta Forna
African Fiction - 4 Debut Novels “Abie, a West African woman who has lived in London for years, learns that she has inherited the family coffee plantation in her native village. Abie returns to consider her inheritance and visits with four of her aunts, daughters of four of the 11 wives of her great-grandfather. The aunts tell Abie their life stories, which span nearly a century. They describe the founding of the village and the coffee plantation, what it was like seeing a white man for the first time, the end of colonialism, the first elections, political and religious upheaval, and the social implications of polygamous families. Because of the shifting time periods, the array of names, and the complicated family connections, the characters blend together, and it is difficult to identify each from one story to the next. However, Forna, whose memoir, The Devil That Danced on the Water, received critical acclaim, beautifully crafts an intimate portrait of the evolution of one West African community. Without didacticism, she illuminates the intricacies of the relationships and customs and the progress and decline of this particular family. Highly recommended for all libraries collecting fiction.” – Library Journal

Source: http://www.thereader.ca/2013/02/african-fiction-4-debut-novels.html

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