It was the fourth missed call in one hour, I looked at the screen, saw the caller ID and tossed the phone aside. The call could wait. Nothing was more important than what I was doing, or I should say what was being done to me.
And what was that?
None other than having my mind made love to by a very skilled lover. Over and over again, it was climax, after climax after climax, until I quivered in sweet exhaustion. But even then, I wanted more.
That's how Chimamanda Adichie's Americanah made me feel. Now I know not everyone feels this way about the book, some people opine that it was unduly long and winding. Some think it was average at best, some enjoyed it but weren't blown away.
Some others like me felt more strongly about it. While I wasn't necessarily blown away, I was captivated. So much so that when I wasn't reading the book, I was thinking about it. I found myself hoping work and conversations could end so I could get back to it. And when I did I would deliberately read slowly, savoring each word, afraid that the pleasurable experience would end too soon.
Funny enough, I didn't like the protagonist Ifemelu. I find her self righteous, judgemental, aloof, unapproachable, unrelatable, annoying and haughty. Yes, she's very intelligent and opinionated but I felt her negatives outweighed her positives. It seemed that at immediately meeting someone, she was quick to find all the flaws in them... Meanwhile she's also a terribly flawed person. She reminds me of the saying; don't judge me because I sin differently from you. I mean; she judged her boss' husband for being condescending and possibly unfaithful. Yet she came back to Nigeria and started cheating with Obinze which eventually led him to divorce his wife, and be with her, his one true love.
Right. She was his one true love. But if the silly girl hadn't ignored Obinze for all those years then he wouldn't have had to marry someone else in the first place, and eventually bring the poor woman's world crashing.
Yet, maybe that's why I loved this book so much, it's characters affected me. Chimamanda gave each character, regardless of their significance or lack thereof, to the story, a personality. They had fully formed characters, pasts, futures, hopes and disappointments. She gave them life.
Following Anonymous Rider's comment asking for suggestions on what to read, I got to thinking of some books I've read.
I loved Dominic Dunne for exposing the lives of wealthy Aristocrats to me, WASPs and their way of living.
I adored Sheldon for his suspense and unexpected twists.
I respected Sir Jeffrey Archer for telling great stories. If you never read Cain and Abel then you never read! And if you did, then did you read Sons of Fortune? If you didn't, you should!
I tucked into bed occasionally with Danielle Steele.
I ran away from Stephen King whose books threatened to cause me paranoia and depression (I still get haunted by Misery and The Girl Who Loved Tom Gordon).
I dabbled in the political works Frederick Forsyth before I became carried away by lighter stuff. I particularly love The Day of The Jackal and The Fist of God.
I was deeply touched by Nick Hornby's About a Boy. I see they're airing a TV series of the book and its a complete insult to that book! The movie was made as well, Hugh Grant did it justice.
I read the Lord of The Rings Trilogy, longest book I ever read; bigger than the Dictionary.
I devoured EVERYTHING Jackie Collins wrote and blushed at the sex scenes.
I read several pyschological thrillers that left me feeling psychologically drained.
I had my "bubble gum" phase and overdosed on Marian Keyes, Maeve Binchy, Fiona Walker and Sophie Kinsella; the queens of literary romcom.
I still remember getting goosebumps when I got to the end of William Diehl's Primal fear, when I learnt that the accused that I'd rooted and prayed for, feigned his multiple personality disorder! (This was later acted by Richard Gere and Edward Norton and they did it some justice).
Time and time again I shook my head at John Grisham whose books I found terribly flat, having neither suspense nor climax. But I see that he begin to pick up the pace in the 2000s with books like The Appeal, The Associate and others.
I marveled at Dan Brown and wondered about the Illuminati while I read The Da Vinci Code, Angels & Demons and Deception Point.
And then there are those stories I remember whose authors I don't.
I know I had a large consumption of books written about the Holocaust and the gas chambers at Auschwitz. Remember Nuremberg?
Strangely, unlike most book lovers I never liked Mills & Boons and other romance novels, and I found reading them to be a chore, so I skipped those and went straight to the heavy stuff.
Unfortunately these days there's very little time to read. Presently I'm only reading self help and motivational books. At the moment I'm reading The Secret, Why Men Love Bitches and The Bible. I've got some books I'm yet to start on or finish. See below. Cross Country was mainly set in Nigeria and is a very interesting read.
What are you reading? What's the most memorable book you've read and what reads would you recommend for Anonymous Rider and those of us who would love a good read? What's your all time favourite read? Who's your favourite author? Do tell.
Photos; Google images.
I'm sorry I deleted the post I put up earlier. I sincerely felt miffed at the whole disrespect thing but I didn't want to begin any tribe finger-pointing, so I thought it best to take it down. Apologies.