Enter your mobile number or email address below and we'll send you a link to download the free Kindle App. Then you can start reading Kindle books on your smartphone, tablet, or computer - no Kindle device required.
To get the free app, enter your email address or mobile phone number.
Americanah (Ala Notable Books for Adults) Hardcover – Deckle Edge, May 14, 2013
|New from||Used from|
Frequently Bought Together
Customers Who Bought This Item Also Bought
More About the Author
Amazon Author Rankbeta(What's this?)
Top Customer Reviews
But what about the story? If you read the summary inside the cover (presumably to become the book-flap blurb), you will see that it starts with two high-school sweethearts in Lagos, Ifemelu and Obinze. You read that Ifemelu will obtain a visa for the USA and move there for fifteen years, but that Obinze, who stayed to finish his degree in Nigeria, was excluded by an America fearful after 9/11 so instead spent several years living illegally in London. Finally, you will be told that Ifemelu and Obinze meet up again on her return and "face the toughest decisions of their lives.Read more ›
The main part of the story takes place in a hair salon in Trenton, New Jersey. Ifemelu is on a fellowship at Princeton and the nearest place to get weaves is in Trenton. As she is getting her hair done she goes back in time and the reader gets filled in with her life story.
Ifemelu grew up in poverty in Lagos. She managed to go to university there and won a scholarship to Wellson, a college in Philadelphia. There, she struggles with money and finds it very difficult to get a job. She knows little about the culture and "she hungered to understand everything about America, to wear a new, knowing skin right away." When she does work, she sends money back home to her parents. Ifemulu's primary job is as a nanny. She describes the dynamics of her employer's marriage as `she loves him and he loves himself'. She is introduced to her employer's cousin Curt and Ifemelu and he have a relationship for quite a while. His being white and rich cause some difficulties for them.
Ifemelu has cut off all contact with Obinze despite the fact that they had planned to be together. She had made a choice to do something that left her shamed and abased and she is unable to tell Obinze about it. So, rather than tell him, she severs their contact. He is distraught and does not know what to do. He continues to write to her for months but there is no answer from Ifemelu.
Meanwhile, Obinze goes to London where he lives underground after his six month visa expires.Read more ›
Read the blurb and you'll be told Americanah is about a pair of star-crossed lovers from Nigeria, Ifemelu and Obinze, following their adventures as immigrants in the U.S. and U.K. respectively. Technically that's in the book, but Americanah is really a series of vignettes in which an endless parade of minor characters talk about race, nationality, and various other issues, with Ifemelu in the background. (Obinze is here more as her love interest than a protagonist in his own right, and we only get a few chapters from his perspective.)
If you're looking for a book about race in America and aren't concerned about story, by all means, give this a try; Adichie has plenty to say on the subject. But for me this bloated book was a complete slog--I read 5 others from start to finish while plodding through it. The most interesting parts of the characters' lives, the moments when something is actually at stake, are breezed through in narrative summary, while the book focuses in on mundane conversations illustrating Adichie's points about race.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Love the author, great writing, full of insight and humor.Published 20 minutes ago by Noluthando Crockett-Ntonga
This book was an awesome read! Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie is such a talented writer. Her story had me glued to the pages!Published 8 hours ago by jjmm
I anticipated this book to be overrated, but Adichie writes as if she could read the thoughts and feelings inside of me about love and life and American society that I can't... Read morePublished 10 hours ago by L
Outstanding is so many ways. Helps me as an African American to see our struggle through a different clearert and certainly less biased lens (yes I am an ophthalmologist and... Read morePublished 23 hours ago by John P. Mitchell
Fabulous book. As a white American, I found the author gave me new insights and appreciation for what race isl about. This is an important book.Published 1 day ago by M. Jane
Lovely story that is easy to relate to while giving a view into various cultural experiences.Published 1 day ago by Amazon Customer
The more I read, the less I wanted to read. I was content reading a chapter at a time, or even a paragraph. Read morePublished 2 days ago by Andre Brown