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MY THOUGHTS ON CHIMAMANDA’S ‘HALF OF A YELLOW SUN’ — a review by Shoola Oyindamola

TITLE: HALF OF A YELLOW SUN
AUTHOR: CHIMAMANDA NGOZI ADICHIE
GENRE: PROSE
NUMBER OF PAGES: 433
PUBLISHER: ANCHOR
ISBN: 978-000 -720-0283
REVIEWER: SHOOLA OYINDAMOLA

HALF OF A YELLOW SUN, as well as its movie adaptation of same title, is entertaining and informative. It is very well written and memorable.

The book narrates a part of Nigeria’s history through the eyes of ordinary human beings (Biafrans) and their familiar experiences. Themes portrayed in this novel include love, war, and most importantly loss.

HALF OF A YELLOW SUN by CHIMAMANDA NGOZI ADICHIE

HALF OF A YELLOW SUN by CHIMAMANDA NGOZI ADICHIE

The story centers on Olanna. The start of the novel displays her affection for her lover, Odenigbo. The middle of this novel shows the devastating effect of the Biafra war on her relationship with everyone she has known to be family and even herself. The novel closes with the loss of her twin sister at the end of the novel.

Chimamanda writes in a way that her stories never end. She leaves room for assumptions, questioning and gaps to fill by the reader. HALF OF A YELLOW SUN had me craving for more.

This novel educated me concerning the expectations of my gender. It further introduced me to feminism and satisfied my imagination of educated female characters that stand firm. Reading the book as a young African female, I quickly attached myself to the character of Olanna Ozobia – someone I would describe as “a classy 21st century educated Nigerian woman.”

She is a woman who makes decisions of her own. I love that she refuses to be influenced by her rich parents in her choice of husband. Her character and characteristics intimidates and threatens her in-law – Odenigbo’s mother, who did not approve of her. Odenigbo’s mother, to me, represents the traditional Nigerian society that always seeks to approve one thing or another in a female to fit their own “ideals, standards, and stereotypes.”

HALF OF A YELLOW SUN by CHIMAMANDA NGOZI ADICHIE

HALF OF A YELLOW SUN by CHIMAMANDA NGOZI ADICHIE

Olanna reminds the average young African female that she does not have to drown in the ‘Niagara’ of rules, ideals, and norms that have been culturally prepared for her as a female. It reminded me that I don’t need validation from ‘Odenigbo’s mother, the society’ to be and do the best that I can in any situation

Believe me, HALF OF A YELLOW SUN influences a lot of the choices I make for myself today. It is a book that I will definitely recommend.

SHOOLA OYINDAMOLA, author of HEARTBEAT (poems)

SHOOLA OYINDAMOLA, author of HEARTBEAT (poems)

SHOOLA OYINDAMOLA was born and raised in Ibadan, Nigeria. She is a published poet, a feminist, a mentor, a blogger and Co-founder and Resource manager of Sprinng Literary Movement. She loves to writes poems, essays and her non-classifiable opinions. She uses her writing skills with her feminist drive to discuss the gender injustices that need to be fixed. She published her first collection of poems titled “Heartbeat in New York, USA at the age of 16.

Author: Oyindamola Shoola

SHOOLA OYINDAMOLA was born and raised in Ibadan, Nigeria. She is a published poet, a feminist, a mentor, a blogger and Co-founder and Resource manager of Sprinng Literary Movement. She loves to writes poems, essays and her non-classifiable opinions. She uses her writing skills with her feminist drive to discuss the gender injustices that need to be fixed. Her first collection of poems is titled “Heartbeat”. Her second, To Bee A Honey, was published in 2017.

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