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Half of a Yellow Sun by Chimamanda Ngozi…

Half of a Yellow Sun (original 2006; edition 2007)

by Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie

MembersReviewsPopularityAverage ratingConversations / Mentions
4,8152461,439 (4.15)1 / 1105
Title:Half of a Yellow Sun
Authors:Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie
Info:Anchor (2007), Edition: Reprint, Paperback, 560 pages
Collections:Your library
Tags:Biafra, bookclub, fiction, war, Africa, Nigeria, Orange Prize

Work details

Half of a Yellow Sun by Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie (2006)

  1. 80
    Things Fall Apart by Chinua Achebe (mrstreme)
  2. 40
    Mister Pip by Lloyd Jones (2810michael)
  3. 41
    The Thing Around Your Neck by Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie (2810michael)
    2810michael: På dansk: En halv gul sol
  4. 20
    There Was A Country: A Personal History of Biafra by Chinua Achebe (chazzard)
  5. 10
    A Sunday at the Pool in Kigali by Gil Courtemanche (imyril)
    imyril: Another difficult novel of modern Africa, focusing on the Nigeria civil war and the Biafra famine rather than Rwanda.
  6. 10
    Ancestor Stones by Aminatta Forna (cbl_tn)
  7. 21
    Little Bee by Chris Cleave (BookshelfMonstrosity)
    BookshelfMonstrosity: The stories of a impoverished countryside boy and two upper-class sisters are told against the backdrop of the 1960s Biafran War. This book, by one of Nigeria's most famous authors, should appeal to readers interested in Nigeria's history, Nigerian society and the lives of women in Nigeria.… (more)
  8. 10
    Cutting for Stone by Abraham Verghese (Iudita)
  9. 10
    Never Again (Africa Women Writers Series) by Flora Nwapa (goddesspt2)
    goddesspt2: Cited by Adichie in her Author's Note.
  10. 10
    Sunset at Dawn by Vincent Chukwuemeka Ike (goddesspt2)
    goddesspt2: A novel about the Biafra war. Cited by Adichie in her Author's Note.
  11. 00
    The Baobabs of Tete and Other Stories by Kari Dako (WorldreaderBCN)
  12. 00
    The Ghost of Sani Abacha by Chuma Nwokolo (WorldreaderBCN)
  13. 00
    Graceland by Chris Abani (wandering_star)

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English (225)  Danish (4)  Swedish (4)  Finnish (4)  Italian (3)  French (2)  Spanish (1)  Dutch (1)  Norwegian (1)  All languages (245)
Showing 1-5 of 225 (next | show all)
A well written book about a difficult time.

I only know of African what I read. This story reveals a history and place that are basically unimaginable to me. The story of Biafra, the Nigerian-Biafra War (1967-1970), the strange normalcy of war, the cruelty, hunger, confusion and dying. It's impossible for me to assess the accuracy or faithfulness of the writing to the story of the people of Biafra.

I live in the United States, in Texas. I am white. None the less, the unimaginable in this story is getting closer and closer in the chaotic, deceitful American (USA) culture of 2015. ( )
  yhgail | Feb 20, 2019 |
A powerful and well written novel about the Nigeria/Biafra civil war. Adichie is an astounding writer, advanced beyond her years. ( )
  patl | Feb 18, 2019 |
I've also read Americanah by Adichie, a novel that I enjoyed so much, save for the double story line with her lover in Nigeria. i went into this novel a little weary, afraid that again I'd be in a situation where I loved one story line and didn't care for the other. Half a Yellow Sun was the most pleasant surprise I could get. From start to finish I loved it. And it gave me insight and knowledge that I didn't have before regarding the internal struggles that Nigeria has gone through. I'm a little embarrassed to admit that I had never even heard of Biafra before. This book was at the same time as lovely as it was emotionally straining. ( )
  Katie_Roscher | Jan 18, 2019 |
In the 1960s, a group of idealistic academics get together to talk about Nigeria and the direction their country is going. Odenigbo hosts, and his girlfriend Olanna, her family, and his houseboy Ugwu all get caught up in the tumultuous events of Biafran independence and the ensuing war.

Though it's a sweeping tale covering several years, Adichie focuses so brilliantly on her characters that the reader is drawn in to their lives, dreams, and events that affect them specifically. In part, she drew on her parents' experiences during the Biafran war, and though she mentions in the author's note that she didn't always stay historically accurate for the sake of the story, Adichie clearly has done her research and includes a page-long bibliography for anyone interested in following up and reading more. I knew nothing of these events, but could still follow the story and the raw human drama and emotion she brings out in these characters. I may not quite be able to bring myself to read it again, but I would highly recommend it to anyone who enjoys historical fiction or literary fiction with strong character development. ( )
  bell7 | Dec 22, 2018 |
I'm glad I read this book. Despite the heavy subject of (civil) war, it was a very interesting read.
Politics and war and their consequences are well mixed with emotions like love, the need to belong, hatred, trust, betrayal, all these voiced through a group of characters that center around Olanna and her twin sister Kainene.

For me the book brought back childhood memories. Pictures of news items I saw on television about the war, the starving children. Also voices of class mates in elementary school making cruel jokes about the starvation.

I read this book with great interest. It will linger on for quite a while, I think. ( )
  BoekenTrol71 | Nov 3, 2018 |
Showing 1-5 of 225 (next | show all)
While there are disturbing scenes, the writing is superb, and Adichie puts a human face on war-torn Africa. The characters are authentic, the story is compelling. It is a worthwhile read, which will linger in your thoughts long after you turn the last page.

» Add other authors (12 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Adichie, Chimamanda Ngoziprimary authorall editionsconfirmed
Andoh, AdjoaReadersecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Miles, RobinNarratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Sundström, JoakimTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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Today I see it still--

Dry, wire-thin in sun and dust of the dry months--

Headstone on tiny debris of passionate courage.--

Chinua Achebe,

From "Mango Seedling" in

Christmas in Biafra and Other Poems
My grandfathers, whom I never knew,
Nwoye David Adichie and Aro-Nweke Felix Odigwe,
did not survive the war.
My grandmothers, Nwabuodu Regina Odigwe and Nwamgbafor Agnes Adiche, remarkable women
both, did.
This book is dedicated to their memories:
ka fa nodu na ndokwa.
And to Mellitus, wherever he may be.
First words
Master was a little crazy; he had spent too many years reading books overseas, talked to himself in his office, did not always return greetings, and had too much hair.
'I am Nigerian because a white man created Nigeria and gave me that identity. I am black because the white man constructed black to be as different as possible from his white. But I was Igbo before the white man came.'
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(Click to show. Warning: May contain spoilers.)
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0007200285, Paperback)

In 1960s Nigeria, a country blighted by civil war, three lives intersect. Ugwu, a boy from a poor village, works as a houseboy for a university professor. Olanna, a young woman, has abandoned her life of privilege in Lagos to live with her charismatic new lover, the professor. And Richard, a shy English writer, is in thrall to Olanna's enigmatic twin sister. As the horrific Biafran War engulfs them, they are thrown together and pulled apart in ways they had never imagined. Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie's masterpiece, winner of the Orange Prize for Fiction, is a novel about Africa in a wider sense: about the end of colonialism, ethnic allegiances, class and race - and about the ways in which love can complicate all of these things.

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:09:36 -0400)

(see all 3 descriptions)

A novel set during Nigeria's struggle for independence in the 1960s involving five characters including thirteen-year-old Ugwu, a university professor, the professor's mistress, and a young Englishman named Richard.

(summary from another edition)

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