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Random House LLC
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Americanah (Ala Notable Books for Adults) Kindle Edition
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|Length: 610 pages||Word Wise: Enabled||Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled|
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Ifemelu and Obinze are in love. They are teenagers in Lagos, Nigeria with big dreams for the future that, for the most part, do not involve Africa. Ifemelu has an opportunity to move to the United States for college. Obinze, who cannot get a visa, still encourages her to go. She lives a life separate from him and does something that is so destructive to her soul she fully separates herself from Obinze—without telling him why. The book alternates between their two stories, as well as in the past and present, but the writing is so perfect this all works seamlessly.
But more than anything else, "Americanah" is a book about life and hope. Love and regret. Racism, prejudice and justice. Leaving home and going back. It is a book that speaks truths profound and witty. It is a book to be cherished.
This is a wide ranging, smart novel that makes the ideas of race and color and gender real in the context of the sexual, political, religious and intellectual cultures of America, Nigeria and England. Ifemelu, the young woman we follow from Africa to America and back, at one point, frustrated by a young American white woman who asks about the book she is reading thinks, "Why (do) people ask “What is it about?” as if a novel ha(s) to be about only one thing." This novel is about many many things.
And though she is not optimistic about racism in America, Aditchie gives us one answer from Ifemelu: "The simplest solution to the problem of race in America? Romantic love. Not friendship. Not the kind of safe, shallow love where the objective is that both people remain comfortable. But real deep romantic love, the kind that twists you and wrings you out and makes you breathe through the nostrils of your beloved. And because that real deep romantic love is so rare, and because American society is set up to make it even rarer between American Black and American White, the problem of race in America will never be solved."
Needless to say, I absolutely adored this book. It was incredibly well-written and worth all 500+ pages necessary. The characters were so alive o felt like they were in the same room as me. This is definitely one of my all-time favorite books.