Friday, January 9, 2009

The Shadow Speaker Nnedi Okorafor

The Shadow Speaker by Nnedi Okorafor I could not put this book down, I loved this story. Its set in West Africa 2070. A nuclear war had taken place years before, a scientist dropped Peace Bomb in each Continent causing The Great Change. After the change some people were born with special gifts, metahumans. Ejii is a shadow speaker. She has the ability to see in the dark and hear the premonition of shadows that only speak the truth. The shadows tell Ejii she must disobey her mother. In order for Ejii to save Kwamfa her home and pervent a war she must go with Jaa, the Queen of Niger to the Golden Meeting. World leaders will gather in Ginen to try find a peaceful way to coexist since windows to other worlds are now open. The author introduces the reader to Ginen in her first novel Zahrah the Windseeker. The guilt of going against her mother keeps Ejii from leaving with Jaa. The shadows keep telling her she must go, so she does. Ejii begins her adventure with Onion, a talking camel. Along the way she runs into Dikeogu, another metahuman. Okorafor-Mbachu tells a great story. The strength of her female characters reminds me of Octavia Butler. I really enjoyed Ejii and Dikeogu relationship to me it was similar to that of Lyra and Will's from Phillip Pullman's His Dark Materials Trilogy The Shadow Speaker is a wonderful fantasy adventure story. I would suggest reading Zahrah the Windseeker first, you don't have to but you'll get a better feeling for Ginen and the world leaders at the Golden Meeting.

Time to Share

As she'd sat there, the shadows did something strange. They pulled in close, and she could feel them press against her cheeks and linger at her forehead. Then it was as if they were massaging her temples. She was so absorbed in this strangeness that she didn't notice the big sand-dune cat approach her.

1 comment:

Zetta Elliott said...

Hey, Doret. I don't know why, but I'm having a hard time finishing The Shadow Speaker! And I don't think I'm going to write a review, b/c I can't put my finger on what it is I don't like. It feels kind of abrupt--things just happening, creatures appearing...but then I don't read much SF so maybe this is par for the course? I'm glad you liked both her books, and I'm glad she's writing SF set in Africa...I wonder what teens think of these books...