- Taschenbuch: 304 Seiten
- Verlag: Abacus (5. März 2009)
- Sprache: Englisch
- ISBN-10: 0349120641
- ISBN-13: 978-0349120645
- Größe und/oder Gewicht: 12,9 x 2 x 19,6 cm
- Durchschnittliche Kundenbewertung: 1 Kundenrezension
- Amazon Bestseller-Rang: Nr. 167.222 in Fremdsprachige Bücher (Siehe Top 100 in Fremdsprachige Bücher)
Say You're One Of Them (Englisch) Taschenbuch – 5. März 2009
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Say You're One of Them gives voice to its children in beautifully crafted prose and stunning detail. Uwem Akpan is a major new literary talent. (Peter Godwin, author of Mukiwa)
Uwem Akpan writes with a politcal fierceness and a humanity so full of compassion it might just change the world. His is a burning talent. (Chris Abani, author of The Virgin of the Flames)
A powerful and vivid debut collection describing the plight of children caught up in difficult and often harrowing situations throughout the continent of Africa.Alle Produktbeschreibungen
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In the title story, set in Rwanda in 1994 when members of the Hutu ethnic group killed up to a million rival Tutsis, a child cowers in a home while machete-wielding mobs rampage outside and refugees stuff themselves in a tiny loft above. There is no escape, particularly since the parents are from different groups, so there will be blood.
In “Luxurious Hearses,” the religious violence that is endemic in Nigeria is compressed into a bus filled with escapees seeking refuge. A young man who has procured a precious ticket to ride to his one-time home must conceal his Muslim identity from the Christians on the bus—hard to do since he lacks his right hand, a sure sign that he is Muslim, and a thief at that. Akpan unforgettably conveys the madness that erupts in this confined space as the bus hurtles to hell.
Child trafficking in West Africa is the background of “Fattening for Gabon,” in which a brother and sister are imprisoned by a seemingly friendly uncle and his gang. The boy’s attempts to save his sister and himself can only lead to violence.
“Say You’re One of Them” is no “Flame Trees of Thika” or even “The Green Hills of Africa.” It’s a classic expose of what happens when civil society is just an easily abandoned pretense.
It’s a difficult book to read. Because of the content, sometimes continuing to turn the pages is an effort. And because Akpan sprinkles the stories generously with the mélange of languages spoken in Africa, parsing the meaning of what people are saying can be hard too. But on those difficult-to-turn-and-understand pages, Akpan always splashes a generous measure of the best of humanity: love, loyalty, responsibility, empathy, self-sacrifice, and faith.
In these stories of children’s lives, general themes emerge: the variety of religions and languages in Africa, the power of faith, the role of the media, the relationship between men and women, the struggle of families to stay together, the driving force of the sex trade, the relentless force of tribalism, and always the plight of the children.
Someone in my bookclub described the book as “beautifully written and utterly heartbreaking” – as the kind of book a person can’t just read. Afterward, there’s the need to do something.
...but I give it 5 stars because Mr. Akpan had the courage to write it, and write it so painfully well as he describes the horrors that the children and their families face. The story and words are authentic; there's no sugar coating, or lessening of the harsh realities. He reminds us that the image of childhood as most of us feel it should be...and as our kids experience it...is no where near the same reality for countless many children. This book is a chilling glimpse of that other world that is very, very real that we cannot ignore or look away from. We must continue to work together as nations to make the world better for us all!
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