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Title: Under the Udala Trees
Author: Chinelo Okparanta
Book Dimension: 5.5 x 8.2
Number of Pages: 336
Publication Year: September 22, 2015
Publisher: Houghton Mifflin Harcourt
Available at: Amazon.com
Short Description: Inspired by Nigeria’s folktales and its war, Under the Udala Trees is a deeply searching, powerful debut about the dangers of living and loving openly.
Ijeoma comes of age as her nation does; born before independence, she is eleven when civil war breaks out in the young republic of Nigeria. Sent away to safety, she meets another displaced child and they, star-crossed, fall in love. They are from different ethnic communities. They are also both girls. When their love is discovered, Ijeoma learns that she will have to hide this part of herself. But there is a cost to living inside a lie.
Okparanta’s Under the Udala Trees uses one woman’s lifetime to examine the ways in which Nigerians continue to struggle toward selfhood. Even as their nation contends with and recovers from the effects of war and division, Nigerian lives are also wrecked and lost from taboo and prejudice. This story offers a glimmer of hope – a future where a woman might just be able to shape her life and truth and love.
Category: Literature/Literary Fiction