25/08/2016

Killer Review: The Woman in Cabin 10 by Ruth Ware



Claudia's Review

After weeks of futilely trying to find a book on my TBR that was actually readable, I finally pulled out Ruth Ware's "The Woman In Cabin 10"-best decision of my life (okay I'm exaggerating)—★

 All I had to do was read the first page and I couldn't put it down. I loved the main character not only because of her claustrophobia which I can relate to but how she was portrayed. The fact that  every single decision she made I understood,every step she took I took and how I felt her fear and anxiety—★★ 

This book was perfect in so many ways one of which was its use of future news articles to fortell impending doom yet being vague enough to leave the reader with so much uncertainty.—★★★


The woman in cabin 10 was a thriller in every sense of the word-from start to finish-there was never a dull moment.—★★★★

I finished this book feeling exhausted but in a good way,the kind that is exhilarating like the aftermath of a rollercoaster ride.—★★★★★

I give this book a ten star because I think it deserves more than a five star and I think Ruth Ware just raised the bar for every other book I'm going to read in the future and thanks to her I am never ever going on a cruise.

17/08/2016

Book Review: Under The Udala Trees by Chinelo Okparanta




Imagine This: Who do you love most? Your religion? Or your sexuality? If you love both, could  there be a reason to merge the two? What if your religion does not accept your sexuality? What would you do then? 😩

It's the year of the Biafra war, Which has taken your dad. And left your mother to become this sour bitch readers cannot recognize. She goes to leave you in the care of some other family. As most poor widows did during the war so they can sort themselves out and come for their kids afterwards. Then you meet this amazing Girl you fall in love with. Like you she's lost so much. Unlike you though, she's from a different tribe. The tribe warring against yours. Difficult. But you love her anyway because you can't fathom your life without her. But your mother, society, all of who are religious extremists, decide it's not possible for a girl and another to be in an intimate relationship. Pray the gay away. Avoid all things gay at all costs. But whatever you do, the gay finds you, catches up with you and once again you're restless! The time has come for you to decide what to choose: religion, your family, blind culture or sexuality 😩

God! This is such an emotional read! It starts out very literary with experiences of Ifeoma with the Biafra war. And how the war affected her community. And her family. Could get graphic at times, so reach for your tissues! Then it peters into upmarket fiction (a sad move for me really, as the writing became more commercial) documenting the mechanisms of Ifeoma's relationship with Amina! This book offers insights into Africa and Homosexuality! Africa's first LGBT book! You'd be moved! You'd be awed. And you'd be gutted! I recommend this to all you looking for insightful reads into other cultures in relation to controversial almost taboo topics! So bookclub fiction! And sadly, like Homegoing, one of those books that didn't make the Manbooker selection this year, but you'd be darn sad if you miss out  of it! 😝

10/08/2016

Event Review: Sip N Swap part Deux! (Book Club at the Tea Baa cafe)






You meet Nice people. You Swap Nice books. You eat Nice food. You talk Nice books!

I loved this month's Sip N Swap! At Tea Baa (amazing place in Accra, Nice food, Great Ambience, see pictures!). A Nice avenue set up by Brunch Over Books to discuss must-read African fiction, or anything written of importance to Africa that you'd advice even your grandmum to go get (—chances are she wouldn't, she's still complaining about her  bad sight even though she's got six contacts in different frames!).

This month's (see last month's) event was more personal. The crowd more open. Discussions starting even before the event commenced. Yes, you won't find it difficult starting conversations with a bunch of bookworms because no one is looking into their phones! I must add, I ordered The Half of A Yellow Sun cocktail and the Things Fall Apart cheesecake! (I'll tell you one thing! I didn't DNF the Half of a Yellow Sun cocktail on the first Sip, like I did the book! And The Things Fall Apart cheesecake, didn't leave a sour taste in my mouth! Like the book did!)

The books that went on everyone's Must Read List:

Homegoing by Yaa Gyasi 


Under The Udala Trees by Chinelo Okparanta
LaDivine by Marie Ndiaye
Go Set A Watchman by Harper Lee
So Long A Letter by Mariamaba
The Memory of Love by Aminata Forna
The Book of Memory by Pettina Gappah.


The Lazarus Effect by H. J Golakai.
Dietland by Sarai Walker.
  

09/08/2016

Book Review: LaDivine by Marie Ndyiaye



Imagine This: All your life you've lied. Lied about your life. Lied that your parents have died. But you do believe in these lies. These lies that have suddenly become your new life. 😝 

Your poor, Black, servant mother. In your old life. Only remembered when you have to make those dreaded visits. Those dreaded visits when you're not elegant Clarisse with a family so cultured! When you just become a Malinka! The daughter of a servant! 😤

You hide your mum from your husband and your daughter. So well-structured, these two lives, both worlds do not confluence. But the pressure to keep this up. All these lies and secrets. Soon is too overwhelming. And suddenly you're being transformed into something your daughter and your husband can't recognize. And have to abandon you. 😟

Nowhere else to be. No Clarrisse to be. You decide to retreat to Malinka. But it's written in the stars, fate, that the daughter of a poor, black servant, like her mother is bound to have a tragic end! Malinka! Malinka! Malinka! Oh, Malinka! 😭


Great. All that, whatever that up there was, over, you need to understand reading this book is a challenge! I am not kidding here! You need to be an advanced, advanced reader to be able to appreciate this piece of poignant literature! Because that's what it is, poignant literature with a complex writing style (multi-phrased sentences) that evokes powerful emotions. If you have a thing for dialogues, no this book is not for you! As its only 10% dialogue. You have to love very, well-written monologues to be able to appreciate it as the plot doesn't move. As the plot doesn't move as fast as the (complex) characters' monolgues! That said, so many times I wanted to shut this book, put it down! But it was the complex writing (which I even had a hate-love relationship with) that drew me in! Till the marvelous end! If I have to give this book a genre: It would be literary, literary, literary fiction! 😨 

My rating: 4 stars [(just because so many times I'd given up on it, only to pick it up again because I couldn't imagine not knowing what happens to Malinka, Ladivine (her daughter) and the other Ladivine (her mother)] ⭐

03/08/2016

Book Review: Black Eyed Susans by Julia Heaberlin



My Review 
Imagine This: A flower. A killer. On the loose. A killer you'd thought you'd jailed years ago. But suddenly Black Eyed Susans have began sprouting underneath your window, a message from the killer or just a coincidence? 😩

Not just a coincidence! 😭

But you'd have to confront the fact that the real killer may not be in prison. That all those years ago, your testimony is going to put an innocent Man on Death Row and he has few days left! 😟

Never mind this innocent Man about to be executed is the least of your problems. Never mind more messages are being 'planted' by this serial killer. Never mind your daughter may be also be in the trouble of also being a Black Eyed Susan. But maybe, unlike you she may not be lucky to survive being buried alive for days under a patch of innocent flowers. Because you were the only one out of four girls who did! 😨

My rating: 5 ⭐

You would love this book, if you're looking to be gripped by suspense!—★ I forced myself to read it all in one-go, but God, I began having a raging migraine (because I was so grogged out that day) and fell asleep dreaming I was continuing it, the words playing in my head! (Does this happen to anyone?)—★★★ If you're looking to read something with amazing writing!—★★★★ If you're looking for something well-researched!!!—★★★★★

Please, Please go read this book! Before it's made into a movie!  Because it's been optioned for film! That's just really one of the tiny reasons to read this very, original thriller! (And trust me, when I say this because I am one of those that have DNFed thrillers for not being original!) And the writing is amazing!!!! Characters well-developed!!!! 😍