Say You’re One of Them by Uwem Akpan – Book 56

I literally feel like I was tricked into reading ANOTHER book of short stories!  I started reading Say You’re One of Them by Uwem Akpan, and until I was a few pages into the second story, I didn’t realize they all were short stories!

But I have to say, WOW.  While I’ve read other short story books I have enjoyed, usually there are many, or at least a few, where I completely don’t get the ending.

But the stories in Say You’re One of Them are moving and easy to understand (even the endings).  All of the stories take place in Africa and focus on different children with various issues in the country, mainly amongst those in extreme poverty.

For instance, one story is told from the perspective of the brother of a 12-year-old prostitute who is supporting her family.  Another story is told from the perspective of a 10-year-old older brother who is being sold, along with his sister, to child traffickers.

You can actually read the entire first story, Ex-mas Feast, here!  Or listen to some of the story in audio at the link as well!

This book would be a fabulous introduction for those of you who don’t normally enjoy short stories.  I know I said that about Dancing Girls by Atwood, but now that I’ve read Say You’re One of Them, I know I was wrong before.

Also, this is one of Oprah’s Book Club books and at this moment it’s only $6 on Amazon for the paperback!  (Double check the price, as it might have changed)

Have you ever been surprised at the structure of a book you were reading?



14 thoughts on “Say You’re One of Them by Uwem Akpan – Book 56

  1. This sounds great! I get frustrated by short stories that end in ways I don’t ‘get’ (They make me feel stupid, like “Wait, what? Why aren’t I smart enough to get this?”), so I’m glad this collection doesn’t have those!


  2. I was at the library yesterday and happen to catch hold of a few titles which happens to be short stories then i put it back. I should give myself a chance to read them. Starting from this one. Thanks for sharing.


  3. I will read that story you have linked! I started reading yesterday, but I didn’t have enough time, and well, the first lines were enough to know I will like it. Poor children!
    I’m glad you have found this stories and enjoyed them so much!


    • It definitely ends up being a “poor children” type of book, but that’s one of the reasons why I feel it is so necessary to read it. Stop thinking you have it bad, and realize that there are real struggles in the world. (Not “you” specifically, just people in general).

      And I love that the first story is online so you can have a taste of what his book is all about!


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