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African
Americanah
 
 
Author
Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie.
Publisher Anchor  
Format paperback
ISBN 9780307455925
Pages/Publication Date 588/2014
Daedalus Item Code 49219
This item is not available.
Description
(Winner of the 2013 National Book Critics Circle Award for Fiction, one of the New York Times Book Review's Ten Best Books of 2013, and a Best Book of the Year for NPR, the Chicago Tribune, the Seattle Times, and the Washington Post) Following her Orange Prize winner Half of a Yellow Sun and Purple Hibiscus (winner of the Commonwealth Writers' Prize), Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie gives us this dazzling novel—the odyssey of young lovers Ifemelu and Obinze, who each escape the Nigerian police state but face difficult choices in the respective countries that they adopt. Beautiful, self-assured Ifemelu departs for America to study. Through failures and successes, new friends and lost relationships, she feels the weight of something she never thought of back home: the divisions of race. Quiet, thoughtful Obinze had hoped to join her, but post-9/11 America will not let him in, and he plunges into a dangerous, undocumented life in London. Years later, Obinze is a wealthy man in a newly democratic Nigeria, while Ifemelu has achieved success as a writer of an eye-opening blog about race in America. But when Ifemelu returns to Nigeria, and she and Obinze reignite their passion—for their homeland as well as for each other—they will face the toughest decisions of their lives.

"Traversing three genres (romance, comedy of manners, novel of ideas) three nations, and within each, a broad swath of social spectrums ... [this] is a book about identity, nationality, race, difference, loneliness, aspiration, and love. On top of [a] familiar narrative scaffolding, a love story, Adichie builds an altogether different tale: one about all the ways we humans fail to love each other.... Adichie notices nearly everything, from how we socialize to what we eat to what we say [and she] has a keen inner ear. She is uncommonly sensitive to the space between people, the way it ripples with all kinds of invisible forces: physical beauty, economic discrepancy, sexual attraction, intellectual appraisal, guilt, resentment, envy, need. In America, she recognizes, the most potent of all the invisible strings—the strong nuclear force of our social physics—is race. Adichie's analysis of that force is specific, damning, clarifying, and comprehensive. She is merciless about white liberal attitudes toward race, with their prevailing mix of awkward self-consciousness, contented ignorance, self-satisfaction, and submerged fear. But she is equally caustic about everyone else's anxious racial jostling. I found myself laughing—ruefully, from recognizing myself and my country, but also delightedly, from recognizing an echo.... In Americanah, Adichie is to blackness what Philip Roth is to Jewishness: its most obsessive taxonomist, its staunchest defender, and its fiercest critic. Stories of immigrants adjusting to the United States are as central to American literature as they are to the American Dream. But Americanah [is] a new kind of migration story: a Great Global Novel."—New York Magazine

 
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