Chibundu Onuzo, The Spider King’s Daughter

onuzoChibundu Onuzo is a young university student in London.  I am not going to say she is the Francoise Sagan or the Amadou Koné of Nigeria… but the novel The Spider King’s Daughter is an interesting young adult book with a dark edge.  Quality-wise, more like some of the middle-range fiction my kids read.  There are no beautiful sentences, and the story relies on rather preposterous coincidences.  But still, Onuzo manages the alternating-voice technique reasonably well.  The plot keeps moving along.  There are enough characters and description to keep the reader interested.  Viewed as an adolescent effort at novel writing, it shows tremendous potential.  I hope to follow Onuzo as she matures as a writer.  She can go two routes, as a young adult writer or as a more adult-oriented Chimamanda Adichie-style author.  I rather hope she goes the young adult route.  Seems like exciting the 15-25 year old group about reading is more important in the long run than writing for reviewers at the London Review of Books.

About mkevane

Economist at Santa Clara University and Director of Friends of African Village Libraries.
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