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Akata witch by Nnedi Okorafor
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Akata witch (original 2011; edition 2011)

by Nnedi Okorafor

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3412632,181 (3.96)21
Member:bluesalamanders
Title:Akata witch
Authors:Nnedi Okorafor
Info:New York : Viking, 2011.
Collections:Your library
Rating:****
Tags:age: young adult, genre: fantasy, read 2013

Work details

Akata Witch by Nnedi Okorafor (2011)

  1. 10
    Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone (Book 1) by J. K. Rowling (questionablepotato)
    questionablepotato: I loved this book(which is admittedly better written than the HP stuff) for the same reasons I loved Harry Potter. Both books have likeable kids learning about themselves and their worlds, a vivid and unique sense of place, and really, really awesome world building.… (more)
  2. 00
    AfroSF: Science Fiction by African Writers by Nnedi Okorafor (goddesspt2)
  3. 00
    The Icarus Girl by Helen Oyeyemi (questionablepotato)
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» See also 21 mentions

Showing 1-5 of 26 (next | show all)
I did not like this book. It took too long to get rolling and the plot set up had too many poorly constructed threads. Maybe I was just impatient. I liked the Fun Facts for Free Agents- I think that was a smart craft move to cut out some of the teaching, but it wasn't enough. And oh God, will we ever escape portrayals of dyslexia as a label of privilege? ( )
  CALammert | Mar 19, 2016 |
Sunny has always been different. She's Nigerian, but was raised in America and has the pale coloring of an albino. And in adolescence, it turns out she's magic, as well. Although magic lets her play soccer in the sun and see wasps that create tiny fantastical scupltures, it also alerts her to grave danger. A magician named Black Hat is mutilating and sacrificing children, and only Sunny and her oha coven can stop him.

I like some components of this book much more than others. The background characters are great, from queenly Chichi to kind Orlu, and the magic is fantastic. When they pick the right juju knife, for instance, it feels like it's part of them. But Sunny herself felt flat to me. Ididn't really get her inner character--and what I did see, I didn't much like. She spends the majority of the final battle crying and telling her friends to give up. And the climactic battle is won with a very unsatisfying deus-ex-machina--Sunny just myseriously and randomly feels a wave of courage knows the exact spell to defeat the scariest Masquerade of them all, that even adult scholar-mages think is unstoppable. ( )
  wealhtheowwylfing | Feb 29, 2016 |
Really interesting fantasy ( )
  ewillse | Jan 18, 2016 |
This young adult novel is set in contemporary Nigeria. Sunny was born in America to Nigerian parents. The family moved back to Nigeria when she was 9. She is an albino that has trouble fitting in at school. On day she sees something strange and frightening in the flame of a candle. That same day she makes some new friends, a boy in school named Orlu and his friend Chichi. Soon her friends help her discover that she is a Leopard person (someone with magical abilities) like them. Will learning to use her abilities help her stop the awful vision she saw in the candle?

I really enjoyed this book. I liked that it took place in Nigeria and that the magic system was based on African culture and beliefs. The characters were fun and likable and a lot of the book was reminiscent of Harry Potter without being a clone of that series. I hope that this is the first book of a series. It seemed like 95 percent of the book was introducing the reader to the magical world rather than the mystery of who the bad guy was. In fact, the confrontation at the end seemed very rushed and too easy for the heroes to resolve. I would give the characters, setting, and system of magic 5 stars, but the ending was a disappointment after the build up so the final rating is 4 stars. I hope there is more to come, now that the reader is familiar with the world, the author can really delve into the conflict with the bad guys. ( )
  Cora-R | Jan 13, 2016 |
Something about Okorafor's style never quite clicked for me, but the setting and world building in this book are fantastic. It was refreshing to find some contemporary young adult fantasy set outside of the US or UK. ( )
  Tafadhali | Nov 18, 2015 |
Showing 1-5 of 26 (next | show all)
"Akata Witch" is a much-needed addition to the many titles featuring Caucasian protagonists — one that will appeal to readers who are interested in foreign cultures, tradition and beliefs, or those who live between cultures themselves.
 
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Epigraph
Here, in the new venture, the extraordinary, the magical, the wonderful, and even the strange come out of the ordinary and the familiar.

--Wizard of the Crow by Ngũgĩ wa Thiong'o
Dedication
To Sandra Marume, the spunky Igbo girl with the sharp tongue and mysterious ways, who just happened to be albino.

It's been awhile, but I hope I captured you well.

And to my mother, who was terrified of masquerades as a kid and still is.  This book dances with them.  Enjoy.
First words
I've always been fascinated by candles.  (prologue)
The moment Sunny walked into the school yard, people started pointing.  (Chapter 1)
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0670011967, Hardcover)

Twelve-year-old Sunny lives in Nigeria, but she was born American. Her features are African, but she's albino. She's a terrific athlete, but can't go out into the sun to play soccer. There seems to be no place where she fits. And then she discovers something amazing - she is a "free agent," with latent magical power. Soon she's part of a quartet of magic students, studying the visible and invisible, learning to change reality. But will it be enough to help them when they are asked to catch a career criminal who knows magic too?

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:06:05 -0400)

Twelve-year-old Sunny Nwazue, an American-born albino child of Nigerian parents, moves with her family back to Nigeria, where she learns that she has latent magical powers which she and three similarly gifted friends use to catch a serial killer.

(summary from another edition)

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