Tag Archives: book

Purple Hibiscus: Book Review

purple hibiscus

 

I honestly don’t know where to start in my process of review the book. I finished the novel on September 25 and I still feel feelings from the book. You know, those feelings that you get once a book touches your soul in a way that you will never be the same? It’s like that. I hoped to post this review that same week, but it couldn’t be done. This book is so amazing I had to perfect this review.

Pure raw emotion. That’s what you get from this novel. Kambili’s fear of everything. The way she copes is heartbreaking. The entire novel is heartbreaking. That is what real life is like – overall heartbreaking with moments and times of joy.

There is so much going on in this novel. Kambili and her family are Catholic and her dad rules the house with an iron fist. Kambili and her brother, Jaja, are terrified of not being perfect in their father’s eyes. Kambili often admits “I wish I thought to say/do that” so she can be praised by her father.

While her father owns his own factories and newspaper, he also donates a large amount of money to the community, gaining the title of  “Omelora”. No one ever knows of the things that he does in his personal life. They don’t know that he caused his wife to have a total of 3 miscarriages. They don’t know that the children are afraid to get of their specified schedule that he made because they never knew how their father would punish them. The fear that he instilled in his children made them to be robots and not their actual self.

That is what the novel is about. It’s about a 15 year old girl finding her voice and her personal sense of freedom in a hostile living environment, both inside and outside the home. While the domestic violence and child abuse is going on in the home, outside in country  where they live, Nigeria, a military coup starts to run the country. People are dying. Conspiracy theories start to form.

Despite all of this, Kambili finds her voice at her Aunts house, where she goes to stay for a bit due to certain circumstances. She finds her smile with Father Amadi. They form a friendship and affection towards one another.

This novel is about choices and how even one choice is good it can still have dire consequences. It is also about having faith and accepting differences. Just because someone else have a different view of something, does not mean that they are going to hell, as Kambili learns.

The interaction between Kambili and her brother, Jaja, is what makes this book. They don’t speak with words often, they speak to each other with their eyes. They know how to read each other’s thoughts in the stillness of the silence. They automatically know things about each other this way.

The indirect main character of the novel is Kambili’s paternal grandfather, Papa Nnukwu. Everything seems to be centered around him and the consequences of what happens to Kambili and Jaja after they spent time with him.

This novel is shockingly breathtaking and will make you want to read it all in one sitting. I’d like to thank the Goodreads group, Readers with a Cause for picking this novel for our book discussion.

This novel is being added to my favorites list.

Is it one of your favorites? Let me know!

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Books vs Electronic Devices: The Case of Books

Which is better? Which do you prefer? Let’s list the pros and cons of books! In no particular order of course.

 

BOOK Pros:

 
1. The Smell!

 

old book smell
2. The excitement you get after you read the back of the cover, the inside of the cover, and a random page and still wanting to buy the book
3. Soft covers are cheaper than hard covers
4. People will stop and ask you about the book if they’ve read it before

book reccomends person
5. The realization of progress being made once you move the book mark.
6. No Special cords/ chargers needed
7. Get to add something new to your ever expanding book case

bookends
8. The joy of going to the book store just to find a new read
9. Visiting the Librarylibrary in paris
10. Knowing you’re supporting an author, an artist (for the book cover), a publicist, the company selling the book, and the place you bought the book from

 

BOOK Cons:
1. PAPER CUTS!
2. Books can get heavy, quickly i like big books
3. Can’t read in the dark
4. If any damage happens to the book, you feel like you lost a friend
5. The possibility of accidentally losing the spot, or the book mark falling out
6. Hands get tired after a while
7. Takes away spaceno room for books
8. Forever lost if “borrowed” to a “friend”
9. Spending gas or delivery fee to purchase the book
10. Constantly readjusting to find the perfect reading position

uncomfy reading positions

 

Did the pros outweigh the cons? Did cons triumph over the pros?

Let me know what you think.

 

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Lean In: Book Review

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Sheryl Sandberg has received more than her share of publicity as being Facebook’s chief operations officer. With her new book out, Lean In, it’s becoming more difficult to not hear her name on a regular basis. She has made her mark in the technology world. She hit the book world with both feet running. The book also produced something else, an organization, Leanin.org which Sheryl encourages everyone to visit at the end of the book.

The book starts off with Sheryl stating that her grandmother went to UC Berkley, her mother went to college, and Sheryl herself went to Harvard as well as Cambridge. This sent a message of “if you don’t come from a well-educated and financially stable family, you will not be as successful as I am”. Even though she puts it sweetly, it’s kind of a kick to the face. Sheryl Sandberg is what Peggy McIntosh would call “White Privilege”.

The only thing lacking in this book is cultural diversity, or any diversity other than males and females. The American office corporation is mostly populated with white Americans. This is addressed once in the book when an African American business man spoke with Sheryl after she’s been quiet at a business meeting and told her to start speaking up as the only female in the meetings, just like he had to speak up as the only African American in the meetings. Along with needing more women in the workplace, we also need more diversity – more people of different backgrounds.

Before I started reading, I thought the audience for this book were middle to late 20’s who either had an entry level position or for women who have been in the office for a few years. I was wrong. Even though the book offers insight and advice that everyone can use, the book is mainly for older women who are higher in the office work chain that, usually, already have a family and are being passed up for promotions.

The overall theme of the book can be summed up as women’s lack of speaking up in the workplace. This generally covers everything from isolating yourself in meetings to not speaking up during meetings because you are surrounded by people who are higher in rank and of the opposite gender. Women also make sacrifices to their careers by having families and making time for their families. This makes receiving promotions more difficult for women, according to the author. While women need to lean in more at meetings, men need to lean in more at home and help around the house. Sheryl is talking about gender equality.

There are many issues addressed in the book. Sheryl covers feminism, gender equality, business, family, career, leadership, and research. This book was put together beautifully. It flowed and had more than enough research to back up her opinions. She points out, however, that this book is not a self-help, directions on how to be successful, or a mentorship book. This is Sheryl’s manifesto. This is her life, her experiences and journey. With hard work, dedication, a few lucky moments, and some connections, she got where she is today. This book may be Generation Y’s The Feminine Mystique. No one has not tried to start a movement of this scale since, not until Sheryl Sandberg.

The reason Sheryl starts out the book with her grandmother is not only did her grandmother go to college in the 1940’s, but to also illustrate that not much has changed for women since then. The things that have changed are due to women standing up for themselves and letting their voices be heard. We have more choices in life. We get more options for picking our careers, but we still get paid less than men. Men are still preferred for most high paying jobs or jobs with power such as lawyers, doctors, and government officials. This will not stop until we all make the conscious decision to treat everyone equally and end gender stereotyping.

Overall, it was an insightful book filled with research and experiences – good and bad. It’ll be a good reference book one day for the future generations to look back to for life in the early 21st Century.

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