In her most intimate and seamlessly crafted work to date, Adichie turns her penetrating eye on not only Nigeria but America, in twelve dazzling stories that explore the ties that bind men and women, parents and children, Africa and the United States.
In “A Private Experience,” a medical student hides from a violent riot with a poor Muslim woman whose dignity and faith force her to confront the realities and fears she’s been pushing away. In “Tomorrow is Too Far,” a woman unlocks the devastating secret that surrounds her brother’s death. The young mother at the center of “Imitation” finds her comfortable life in Philadelphia threatened when she learns that her husband has moved his mistress into their Lagos home. And the title story depicts the choking loneliness of a Nigerian girl who moves to an America that turns out to be nothing like the country she expected; though falling in love brings her desires nearly within reach, a death in her homeland forces her to reexamine them.
Searing and profound, suffused with beauty, sorrow, and longing, these stories map, with Adichie’s signature emotional wisdom, the collision of two cultures and the deeply human struggle to reconcile them. The Thing Around Your Neck is a resounding confirmation of the prodigious literary powers of one of our most essential writers.
*I gave 5/5 stars on Goodreads
This was my first Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie and I was very impressed by her writing style and the approach she gives it. I like the way she uses description and how the characters really tell us a story. An amazing collection of short stories, describing and exploring the human condition. She talks about marriage as an institution, infidelity, sex, dating married man for money, differences in social classes and the experience of living in America being born in another country, corruption and politicians, just to mention some. I was amazed by how she explores all these situations through the characters and their environment. It is always interesting to see how through words writers can portray the social condition, the economic condition, all the aspects of one place, in this case the African culture and be able to show that to the readers.
Some of the stories did not take off for me, I kept expecting that to happen, not that I did not like them, but was expecting more, but overall, it was and interesting and enjoyable read. I will definitely read more of her work.
My Favorite Quote
"It is one of the things she has to come to love about America, the abundance of unreasonable hope".