Friday, February 25, 2011

Book Review: Say You're One of Them by Uwem Akpan



Link for book @ Publisher:
http://www.hachettebookgroup.com/books_9780316086370.htm

Link for the book @ Christian Book:
http://www.christianbook.com/say-youre-one-of-them/uwem-akpan/9780316086370/pd/086370?item_code=WW&netp_id=684028&event=ESRCN&view=details
(on back order) Paperback $11.99

Link for the book @ Amazon:
http://www.amazon.com/Youre-Them-Oprahs-Book-Club/dp/0316086371/ref=sr_1_1?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1298650381&sr=1-1
Paperback is $8.01
Kindle is $9.99


This book was an Oprah's Pick Selection for 2009

Published by Hatchette Book Group, Little, Brown and Company June 2008/360 pages
Non-fiction/Slavery/Abuse/African Stories of Children

I really have debated on whether or not this book should be reviewed on this blog that is devoted to children/young adult books. In my opinion this book should not be read by a child younger than 15 or 16, and even then if the child is sensitive in nature not at all.

This book is a compilation of 5 stories of children living in Africa. Their stories are all tragic, depressing, sad, disturbing----not a book to read before bedtime. 
One of the stories is of a young boy riding a bus along with others that are Christian (I use that word loosely), he is a Muslim. He tries to keep his identity hidden, lying and trying to pass himself as a Christian. The story ends graphically violent.
Another story is of a boy that's family wants him to go to school, so his older sister prostitutes herself at age 12 in order to earn money for the family.
I know that this book was given accolades by Oprah and others but I did not like this book, I disliked it very much. I'm aware of the horrible atrocities of what is going on in Africa, India, Pakistan, the middle east, Belarus, and a host of other countries. But, I do not want to read the details of children that are sexually abused. I know it happens, it happens in America as well, but I don't want to buy a book and read about it. If I'd known that this book had this information in it I would not have bought it.
The book I feel was written with an intent of educating the world about what children in Africa are going through. They feel that the news we are given is downplayed, so that we are not given the horribleness of their existence.
I also had difficulty in reading the book, it is filled with broken English and with the language of the people living in Africa (their language without translation).

Blissful Reading!
Annette

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