The Death Of Vivek Oji

By Akwaeke Emezi

9.5/10
(9.5/10)

245 pages

INSTANT NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER

A NEW YORK TIMES EDITOR’S CHOICE

LONGLISTED FOR THE DYLAN THOMAS PRIZE

“Electrifying.” —O: The Oprah Magazine

Named a Best Book of the Year by The New York Times, The Washington Post, NPR, USA TODAY, Vanity Fair, Elle, Harper’s Bazaar, Marie Claire, Shondaland, Teen Vogue, Vulture, Lit Hub, Bustle, Electric Literature, and BookPage

What’s it about?
This story takes place in Nigeria.  Ahunna and Chika hear a noise on their porch one afternoon and assume someone has come to visit.  When they open the door they find their son Vivek’s body.  He is dead and has been wrapped in a colorful fabric and left on the front porch.  The family struggles to come to terms with Vivek’s life, as well as his death.
What did it make me think about?
Akwaeke Emezi has a gift.  Her plot keeps you interested, but it is her well-drawn characters that make her a special writer.
Should I read it?
This was one of my favorite books so far this year.  I knew nothing about the plot ahead of time- and I think that was why I enjoyed this story so much.  The characters are vivid and interesting and the plot keeps you reading.  Book clubs everywhere will be choosing this next year.  This is a good one!
Quote-
“I am not what anyone thinks I am.  I never was.  I didn’t have the mouth to put into words, to say what was wrong, to change the things I felt I needed to change.  And every day it was difficult, walking around and knowing that people saw me one way, knowing that they were wrong, so completely wrong, that the real me was invisible to them.  It didn’t even exist to them.So: If nobody sees you, are you still there?”

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