Date(s) - 29/08/2017
7:00 PM - 8:30 PM
Categories No Categories
The next book we will be reviewing will be Under The Udala Trees by Chinelo Okparanta. Date for book club meeting is Tuesday 29th August 2017.
Quick Book Review: A chance meeting between Ijeoma, a Christian Igbo, and Amina, a Muslim Hausa, begins a friendship that turns quickly to passion. “This was the beginning,” Okparanta writes. “Our bodies being touched by the fire that was each other’s flesh … Tingly and good and like everything perfect in the world.”
Ijeoma’s secure, stable childhood has already unravelled by then. The novel is set in 1968, one year into the Biafran conflict, and Ijeoma’s world is beset by “the ruckus of armored cars and shelling machines, bomber planes and their loud engines sending shock waves through our ears”. Things grow worse. Her father, “a man who liked to wallow in his thoughts”, becomes so consumed by sorrow for his massacred people that he refuses to seek refuge during an air raid over their town of Ojoto. When Ijeoma and her mother Adaora emerge from a nearby bunker, they discover his blood-soaked body.
Adaora survives the aftermath physically, but not psychologically. “In a warped, war-induced sort of way, it made sense that she should find ways to shed us all: the soldiers, me, and the house,” Okparanta writes. “To shed, if she could have, all memories of the war. To shed, and shed, and shed. Like an animal casting off old hair or skin.” When Ijeoma at last returned to her mother, she is the “warden”.
Book Club Details:
Date: Tuesday 29th August 2017