Half of a Yellow Sun

Chimamanda Adichie


Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie’s heartbreaking, exquisitely written literary masterpiece. Winner of the Women’s Prize for Fiction 2007.

In 1960s Nigeria, three lives intersect. Ugwu, a boy from a poor village, works as a houseboy for a university professor. Olanna has abandoned her life of privilege in Lagos to live with her charismatic lover, the professor. And Richard, a shy Englishman, is in thrall to Olanna’s enigmatic twin sister. As the horrific Nigerian Civil War engulfs them, they are thrown together and pulled apart in ways they had never imagined.

Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie’s masterpiece is a novel about the end of colonialism, class and race – and about the ways in which love can complicate all of these things.

Reviews of Half of a Yellow Sun

    • ‘Vividly written, thrumming with life…a remarkable novel. In its compassionate intelligence as in its capacity for intimate portraiture, this novel is a worthy successor to such twentieth-century classics as Chinua Achebe’s Things Fall Apart and V. S. Naipaul’s A Bend in the River’ Joyce Carol Oates
    • ‘Here is a new writer endowed with the gift of ancient storytellers’ Chinua Achebe
    • ‘I look with awe and envy at this young woman from Africa who is recording the history of her country. She is fortunate – and we, her readers, are even luckier’ Edmund White
    • ‘Absolutely awesome. One of the best books I’ve ever read’ Judy Finnigan
    • ‘[Deserves] a place alongside such works as Pat Barker’s Regeneration trilogy and Helen Dunmore’s depiction of the Leningrad blockade, The Siege’ Guardian
    • ‘Heartbreaking, funny, exquisitely written and, without doubt, a literary masterpiece and a classic’ Daily Mail
    • ‘Stunning. This novel is an immense achievement’ Observer
    • ‘A landmark novel. Adichie brings to history a lucid intelligence and compassion, and a heartfelt plea for memory’ Guardian
    • ‘I wasted the last fifty pages, reading them far too greedily and fast, because I couldn’t bear to let go … magnificent’ Margaret Forster
    • A powerful account of the Biafran War, horrific and tender in equal measure’ Sunday Telegraph
    • ‘Adichie succeeds in tackling the horrors of this war, imbuing her portrayal of three disparate characters … with warmth, wisdom and an acute insight into human nature’ Daily Telegraph
    • ‘An incredibly absorbing book’ Kele Okereke, Observer

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