Americanah Hardcover – Deckle Edge, May 14 2013
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WINNER 2013 – National Book Critics Circle Award for Fiction
FINALIST 2014 – Baileys Women’s Prize for Fiction
FINALIST 2014 – Andrew Carnegie Medal for Fiction
“Americanah is most memorable for its fine-tuned, scathing observations about worldly Nigerians and the ways they create new identities out of pretension and aspiration…. Adichie displays much keen critical intelligence about how we can unwittingly betray our truest selves.”
—Janet Maslin, The New York Times Book Review
“Masterful.... An expansive, epic love story set in three countries, Adichie’s fourth book pulls no punches with regard to race, class, and the high-risk, heart-tearing struggle for belonging in a fractured world.”
—O, The Oprah Magazine
“Superb…. A lush, big-hearted love story that also happens to be a piercingly funny social critique.”
“‘You can’t write an honest novel about race in this country,’ comments a character towards the end of Americanah. It’s a slyly self-referential joke since, with her ambitious third novel, prize-winning author Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie sets out to prove otherwise, placing race squarely, unapologetically and entertainingly centre-stage…Written with flair and warmth, this impressively poised novel makes the most of Adichie’s sense of wry detachment as an outsider without losing an affectionate humour for both her native Nigeria and adopted country.”
“An incredibly readable and rich tapestry of Nigerian and American life, and the ways a handful of vivid characters—so vivid they feel like family—try to live in both worlds simultaneously. As she did so masterfully with Half of a Yellow Sun, Adichie paints on a grand canvas, boldly and confidently, equally adept at conveying the complicated political backdrop of Lagos as she is in bringing us into the day-to-day lives of her many new Americans—a single mom, a student, a hairdresser. This is a very funny, very warm and moving intergenerational epic that confirms Adichie’s virtuosity, boundless empathy and searing social acuity.”
—Dave Eggers, author of A Hologram for the King
“Adichie’s great gift is that she has always brought us into the territory of the previously unexplored. She writes about that which others have kept silent. Americanah is no exception. This is not just a story that unfolds across three different continents, it is also a keenly observed examination of race, identity and belonging in the global landscapes of Africans and Americans. If Joyce had silence, exile and cunning for his defense, Adichie has flair, loss and longing. And Adichie is brave enough to allow the story to unfold with a distinct straightforward simplicity that never loses its edgy intellect.”
—Colum McCann, author of Let the Great World Spin
“Adichie burst onto the literary scene in 2006 with Half of a Yellow Sun, her searing depiction of the civil war in Nigeria. Her equally compelling and important new novel follows the lives of that country’s postwar generation as they suffer endemic corruption and poverty under a military dictatorship. An unflinching but compassionate observer, Adichie writes a vibrant tale about love, betrayal, and destiny…. [A] touching love story and an illuminating portrait of a country still in political turmoil.”
—Publishers Weekly (starred review)
About the Author
Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie's work has appeared in various publications, including The New Yorker, Granta and Zoetrope. She is the author of The Thing Around Your Neck and of 2 novels, Purple Hibiscus and Half of a Yellow Sun, which won the Orange Prize and was a NBCC Finalist. A recipient of a MacArthur Fellowship, she divides her time between the United States and Nigeria.See all Product Description
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Top Customer Reviews
I truly appreciated reading about Ifemelu's perspective as a black woman in Africa versus a black immigrant to the US. Obinze's immigrant experience in England is also interesting, although I often wanted to get back to reading about the outspoken and fiery Ifemelu. I've read reviews that find the book to be too opinionated, but I really didn't have that reaction. I appreciated the exploration of the politics of race and the challenge to consider one's unexamined perspectives. There was lots of food for thought!
The plot was interesting and the characters were vivid. It was a fun read that managed to explore lots of serious topics.
To sum it up: if you like books about immigrants, the politics of race, and, well, hair - you'll love this one! Especially if you like strong female narrators. Highly recommended, and I think that college students would especially like it. There is something about Ifemelu that took me back to my college days. My mom in her 60s also loved it.
I can say with confidence that this is one of the best books I have ever read.
Emily Raboteau in the Washington Post
I could not say it better than that.
Also, I usually have to force myself to read the first 40pages or so of a new book before I connect with it, but this book is immediately engaging.
The informative part provides the reader with a wealth of extremely interesting details about it means to be black in US, UK and Africa itself. The original element is that most of it is presented from the perspective of middle and upper-middle class people thus avoiding the traditional and well-worn themes of poverty, slums, crime, etc. Ifemelu, the Nigerian born female hero is actually writing a blog about the black experience in US and the author is so keen to share with us what she has observed, that the book contains many long paragraphs from the blog, reproduced in their entirety. All very, very interesting but perhaps to extensive for a work of fiction.
The well written part refers to the actual story and the way the characters are portrayed. This is a two points of view book and the two protagonists, Ifemelu and Obinze make the reader care for them and be interested in what is happening to them. The presence of the “blog” or blog-like sections however dilute the pace and intensity of the story.
It would have been better to split this in two pieces: a social study and a love story. Even so it is a very entertaining read and I definitely recommend it.
Most recent customer reviews
One of the best novels I've read in a long time. Incredible story, beautifully written.Published 1 month ago by Amazon Customer
This is a fabulous book with amazing insights into people's feelings. The story is so interesting and allows me to see some differences between Nigerians and Americans.Published 2 months ago by Eleanor Burns
Adichie is my favourite African writer but I could not finish this book. I felt as if it was a book made up of numerous essays about racism, shadism, corruption, sexism etc. Read morePublished 4 months ago by Shula
Adichie is a wonderful writer; her insights into women's feelings and emotions are very well articulated and point out how women's issues are common throughout the world,... Read morePublished 4 months ago by Sandy in Chapala
Beautifully written .A story that gives you a glimpse of Nigerian society. you almost feel that you are there ,you can see and feel what is going on. I enjoyed it.Published 4 months ago by Amazon Customer