Tuesday, August 20, 2013

Tuesday Intro: Half of a Yellow Sun

Master was a little crazy: he had spent too many years reading books overseas, talked to himself in his office, did not always return greetings, and had too much hair. Ugwu's aunty said this in a low voice as they walked on the path. "But he is a good man," she added. "As long as you work well, you will eat well. You will even eat meat every day." She stopped to spit; the saliva left her mouth with a sucking sound and landed on the grass. 
 Ugwu did not believe that anybody, not even this master he was going to live with, ate meat every day. He did not disagree with his aunty, though, because he was too choked with expectation, too busy imagining his new life away from the village. They had been walking for a while now, since they got off the lory at the motor park, and the afternoon sun burned the back of his neck. But he did not mind. He was prepared to walk hours more in even hotter sun. He had never seen anything like the streets that appeared after they went past the university gates, streets so smooth and tarred that he itched to lay his cheek down on them.He would never be able to describe to his sister Anulika how the bungalows here were painted the color of the sky and sat side by side like polite well-dressed men, how the hedges separating them were trimmed so flat on top that they looked like tables wrapped with leaves."
Half of a Yellow Sun
by Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie

I started this book over a week ago for The Backlist Book Club, but have read only 60 pages. The writing is wonderful, the story is interesting, and although I have had little time to read, I still hope to finish before the end of the month.

What do you think of the opening paragraphs? Would you keep reading?


Every Tuesday, Diane at Bibliophile by the Sea posts the opening paragraph (sometime two) of a book she decided to read based on the opening. Feel free to grab the banner and play along.

25 comments:

  1. It's a lovely opening - and having read the novel I can say it is a remarkable novel in many ways. I learned a lot about Biafra from it, but it isn't always an easy read - it is in fact fairly uncomprimising in it's descriptions of war.

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    1. Heavenali - Learning something from fiction is always an added bonus. I'm glad to know you think so highly of this novel!

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  2. After having read one of Adiche's books, Purple Hibiscus, I would read anything else she wrote!

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  3. I have never read anything by Adiche. That is a very promising beginning -- I would definitely continue reading.

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  4. Great writing style, and the descriptions do bring the reader into the scenes. Thanks for sharing.

    Here's MY TUESDAY MEMES POST

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  5. She is an amazing writer and an amazing woman. She is definitely high on my list of authors I NEED to read.

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  6. This sounds interesting. I like the writing style as well. I hope you enjoy it.

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  7. I'm not sure--the names are challenging and the place is very different. I think it would take me a while to get into the rhythm of the story, but it sounds like it could be rewarding. I would have to go on the leap of faith that I would come to be interested in this world. I don't mean to sound closed-minded, but starting a new book is like starting a new relationship...some take more nurturing time than others.

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    1. JaneGS - I know exactly what you mean! The reason I'm not making much progress is because this book requires much more of an investment on my part than I'm used to making. I KNOW it will be a wonderful novel, but am almost thinking this is not the right time to read it.

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  8. I think I mentioned to you that I read this a few years back and loved it. I'm looking forward to your final thoughts on it.

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    1. Darlene - Yes, you did... and I can already tell it will be an excellent book. I'm just not devoting the time/mental energy necessary to become fully invested. Not sure if I'll continue or wait until winter.

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  9. This novel is new to me...it sounds great!

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  10. JoAnn, I almost close this one as well this week as I'm about to start it for Care's group read:) I love the opening.....enjoy

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  11. I haven't heard about this, but it sounds interesting.

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  12. I would have a hard time with the unfamiliar names, but I'd keep reading.

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  13. What a moving passage! It co poetry drew me in to the mood and the setting of the story. I have had a book by this author to read on my Classics Club list, which now I'm forgetting the title, but I can clearly see that I need to read Achibe's work. No wonder he's so famous and well loved! Thanks for introducing me to him with this tidbit.

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    1. Oops...her work, not his. Sorry.

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    2. Bellezza - This is such a wonderful opening and I really like the writing, but after 60 pages I've decided to set it aside. It's not suiting my current mood, but I will surely pick it up again at some point.

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  14. I haven't read this one yet, but it's on my list. Loved the opening.

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  15. This sounds lovely (and for some reason, brings to mind Cutting for Stone), but I may try the audio rather than the print version. I hate to give up on a book simply because I can't get into the rhythm of the prose. That's when audio books shine!

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    1. Les - I was actually reminded of Cutting for Stone, too! Audio might be very helpful with this book... will head over to audible and listen to a sample.

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  16. I'm very interested in your final thoughts on this book. I want to read it and just keep forgetting to get myself a copy. I think it'll be at the top of my list for my next book shopping venture. I hope you enjoy iy!

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    1. Amy - I ended up setting Half of a Yellow Sun aside. It was a little to heavy/serious for my mood, but I definitely plan to return to it this fall/winter.

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