Americanah: Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie
I first picked up this book because of what seemed to be a friend’s recommendation. It soon turned out he was actually recommending Don Delillo’s Americana. However, Americanah came to be my fave read of last year, so I was glad to make this mistake.
Set partly in Nigeria and partly in the U.S., this book tells the story of Ifemelu, a young Nigerian woman. The novel reflects on societal tensions between different communities and examines the perceptions of race in America, Nigeria and Britain. For the romantics, the novel also tells the love story of Ifemelu and Obinze, which kept me hooked from the start.
If I could recommend any one book to anyone, for now it would be Americanah
Suite Francaise: Irène Némirovsky
Suite Francaise stole the limelight last year, due to the release of the film based on the book. I promise I am not always one of those who insists the books is always better than the film, but in this case it is most definitely true.
The remarkable point of Suite Francaise is not the love story that is narrated in Part Two (although this is still lovely to read.) The novel’s most noteworthy part is the description of the German invasion of Paris during the war. By telling the stories of various characters in French society, Irène weaves a tapestry to wittily and poignantly convey the feeling of being a prisoner in your own homeland.
The Secret History: Donna Tartt
After reading The Goldfinch, I was excited to get my hands of another book by Donna Tartt.
The Secret History is an eerie story of a group of students at a small liberal arts university in the US. The story begins with the death of a university student and plays out to show why the death happened. Gripping and destructive from the start, this book is definitely worth picking up.