Book Review | Arrows of Rain by Okey Ndibe

arrows of rain coverArrows of Rain takes place in the imaginary African republic of Madia. The scene is set with the death of a prostitute being investigated on a beach. Split into three parts, the book relays the stories of two male protagonists: Femi, younger, a reporter, and Bukuru, older, a vagrant whose sanity is in question. Femi observes the arrest of Bukuru for murder and is later summoned to jail as the press recipient of Bukuru’s life story. This recounting is the meat of the novel and reveals a past riddled by trials of love, violence and political corruption.

Ndibe has received much critical acclaim for this novel. Beginning with a murder is one way to draw the reader’s attention. The text is straightforward and easy to read, with chronological jumps being very clear. Some situations seem more devoid of emotion than a reader may prefer, but this also allows for not becoming too caught up in or disturbed by the violence. This text does have graphic parts that may not be suitable for sensitive readers. Overall, the book was well written, but took longer to finish than I had anticipated because I was not very interested in the outcome, although I did enjoy cultural references. Check it out from a library near you.

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About amy de simone
Amy is an active volunteer, traveler and photographer. She is interested in art, libraries, museums and nonprofits. She holds an M.A. in Library & Information Studies and a B.A. in Italian Language & Literature from the University of Wisconsin-Madison.

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