Tuesday, May 11, 2010

EMAIL FROM AMERICA: Revisiting Yellow-Yellow

This is a lesson on how to review a book when you cannot afford not to like the author. Ikhide revisits Yellow Yellow, a book that is, well, not bad, but one that the author is definitely in a better position to trump - assuming she remains a writer.
I love how the reviewer undertakes the job of a literary critic, and begins to provide explanation for the work's obvious lack. Here he goes: "But I could argue that the book’s aimlessness in the end is a great metaphor for Nigeria’s aimlessness in the new dispensation – an uncritical acceptance of alien values and a resulting caricature of what Nigeria once was."
Well done, bro.
But who says that reviewers can't be critics and interpreters? In the absence of any robust narrative about the Niger Delta experience, one can surely return to Yellow Yellow in hopes of finding what one missed in the earlier reading, or what one wished were there.
But I love the review despite the obvious attempt to wring some meaning out of a promising, but only promising, book.


  1. Everyone I've ever spoken to about this book, cannot stop saying how awful they think it is.

  2. Good Simanda. But I wouldn't base my judgment on what others said. I have read the book. There are a few nice things to discover there. But well, you're right in pointing out that it is not the best out there.