I have to admit, I have very little knowledge of Nigeria and of the Republic of Biafra and its states so reading a book like Half of a Yellow Sun was very educational and informative for me. I know very little about Africa actually with the exception of Egypt perhaps, so this really was a wonderful pick.
This is my first experience with Adichie Chimamanda Ngozi and I understand now what people are raving about. I must say the writing was excellent. She was able to make me feel like I’ve just lived through the experience. She was able to show how manipulative a propaganda can get and how people change as the war continues. I will surely read more of her works.
The story is about the war in Nigeria in 1960s when Biafra was trying to establish itself as a separate state/republic from Nigeria. Written in alternating points of view from several characters, the book provides a good insight of Nigerian life. My favorite characters were Kainene and Ugwu. I am still wondering where Kainene is and what happened to her.
The book title was based from the Biafran flag where red symbolizes blood of the massacred in the North, black for mourning, green for prosperity and the half of a yellow sun symbolizes a glorious future which was sadly never seen.
I enjoyed reading this book as I was exposed to something I knew very little about and I am excited to read more pieces from this author and see how they compare.
“There are some things that are so unforgivable that they make other things easily forgivable.”
“You can’t write a script in your mind and then force yourself to follow it. You have to let yourself be.”
“Why do I love him?…I don’t think love has a reason…I think love comes first and then the reasons follow.”
“Grief was the celebration of love, those who could feel real grief were lucky to have loved.”
“You must never behave as if your life belongs to a man. Do you hear me?” Aunty Ifeka said. “Your life belongs to you and you alone.”
Rating: 4/5 stars