Quickie Reviews on Things Fall Apart & The Tent

Here are two quickie reviews on a couple of my recent reads, actually by two pretty prolific authors.

This will be a quickie review because, honestly, I feel kind of indifferent about Things Fall Apart by Chinua Achebe.

I’ve heard great things, but it just left me thinking the book was kind of moderate.

Basically, it tells the story of a Nigerian family who encounters struggles such as tribal regulations and the onslaught of Christian missionaries.

Things Fall Apart is considered almost a classic, so don’t let my review deter you necessarily.

 

The next review is on The Tent by Margaret Atwood, which helps to fulfill my Project Atwood requirement.  The Tent is a short book filled with super short stories (2 pages usually, sometimes less).  I have to say I have mixed feelings on these.  The book is split up into 3 sections, and I enjoyed the second section the best.  The first section I just didn’t understand.

But I did enjoy some of the satirical quotes from the stories.  Here are some of my favorites:

“No more photos.  Surely there are enough.  No more shadows of myself thrown by light onto pieces of paper, onto squares of plastic.” – p. 25 

“You’re not my real parents, every child has thought. I’m not your real child.  But with orphans, it’s true.  What freedom, to thumb your nose authentically!” – p. 29

“What are we do to?  The child sex trade is not for us: our children are unattractive and rude, and – due to the knowledge of our history – have a bad habit of mugging prospective customers and shoving them over cliffs.” – p. 60

The Tent is super short and a very quick read, so if you’re a huge Atwood fan, check it out.  Some of the stories were great, some were bizarre.

Have you read them?  What do you think?

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13 thoughts on “Quickie Reviews on Things Fall Apart & The Tent

    • Isn’t it great??? It’s like what every kid wants to say to their parents when they are angry, but she’s totally joking since obviously being an orphan isn’t something most kids REALLY wish for.

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  1. Hi, I had not heard of this short story collection, Atwood not being known for short stories. I bet they are funny. She has an a-typical sense of humor that might be at times difficult to pierce. I am reading The Year of the Flood and am enjoying it, with many references to current culture that are really funny. I usually do not enjoy distopian works, but she is playful in this novel and I like it a lot.
    Johanna

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  2. Things Fall Apart was required reading in high school for me. I can’t say I was overly impressed as I don’t remember a thing about it! I considered re-reading it for my Nigerian book for the Around the World reading challenge but I think you just saved me the trouble.

    The Tent sounds interesting. I really hoped Handmaid’s Tale would be my classics club spin # but alas I will have to get to it another time. Atwood’s stories certainly has a unique perspective on orpahns and the child sex trade!

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    • I feel like if someone else had read Things Fall Apart with me and we could talk about it, maybe I’d enjoy it more. But I just couldn’t find that “thing” that most people love about it.

      And Atwood, well, she’s really just a cool, authentic, but kind of “out there” author. I’m a big fan.

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  3. Well, Things Fall Apart is a Classic. apart from the onslaught of Christian missionaries on Igboland in Nigeria, Christianity disinterested the communal system of the lands, tore apart their beliefs and disrupted a cohesive culture that thrived on their lore. we must not forget too, Rebecca that colonialism was shoved down the throats of the people, imposed on them under the guise of Christianity.

    Okonkwo the protagonists was a strong man scared of failure who upheld the beliefs and traditions of the land. He felt threatened and found himself in a quandary when the white man came with his new god.

    Incidentally, Chinua Achebe, the author of Things Fall Apart died only about three months ago at the ripe age of 82 and was buried only yesterday in Nigeria.

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    • I didn’t know the author was buried yesterday! I did know that Chinua Achebe died recently, though.

      I think that having someone to discuss this book with would have made it more enjoyable for me. I did find value in it but I just wasn’t able to see that big picture that made it a classic. Thank you for helping me with the book! You’re kind of like my English teacher for this! 😀

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