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Say You're One of Them
Say You're One of Them
Author: Uwem Akpan
Uwem Akpan's first published short story, "An Ex-mas Feast," appeared in The New Yorker's Debut Fiction issue in 2005. The story's portrait of a family living together in a makeshift shanty in urban Kenya, and their attempts to find gifts of any kind for the impending Christmas holiday, gives a matter-of-fact reality to the most extreme c...  more »
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ISBN-13: 9780316113953
ISBN-10: 0316113956
Publication Date: 7/15/2009
Pages: 384
  • Currently 3/5 Stars.

3 stars, based on 12 ratings
Publisher: Back Bay Books
Book Type: Paperback
Other Versions: Hardcover, Audio CD
Reviews: Member | Amazon | Write a Review

Top Member Book Reviews

reviewed Say You're One of Them on + 3 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 6
This book is very well written and very hard to read because the content is so heartrending. In a series of stories, children of Africa recount events in their tragic lives. It is an important book for helping us to understand how conflict tears away the fabric of human existence.
reviewed Say You're One of Them on + 14 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 5
I didn't realize this book was a work of fiction. I think in many ways, it isn't. The problem with Left to Tell or Long Way Gone, the people tell their true stories in a less emotional way. Although the stories are sad, they seem to separate themselves from it and focus on the present. I appreciate that. But in this book, Akpan doesn't take away the emotion from the events. He tells the stories through fictious characters, but I would guess many details are unfortunately true. The police corruption, the religious and ethnic cleansing, and most painful for me, the genocide in Rwanda. The last story in this book covers Rwanda's battle between the Hutus and Tutsis. It left me feeling...different..sad, enraged, ill. It touched me more than Left to Tell could, because in this case, we don't get to see the happier ending or the hope. Instead we see the pain that families went through during the beginning of this crisis. Not all the stories are as painful. Also, be aware that Pidgin English is used in this book.
PamelaH avatar reviewed Say You're One of Them on + 90 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 3
Five stories (all written in the eyes of children) that are heartbreaking, not only because of the story lines but also because they are based on fact. These children are living in terrible circumstances, yet Akpan reminds us that they bounce back quickly to try to survive. Some of the dialog takes some getting used to, but once you figure it out, everything flows smoothly. As the author mentions, many Americans know little about life elsewhere and seemingly, don't want to know. Read these heartwrenching stories, and you will know a little more about life elsewhere, specifically in Africa. Although depressing, these stories are well-written and impressive... I am in awe.
reviewed Say You're One of Them on + 13 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 2
This book gave me an insight into the problems facing the people of Africa. The language made it hard to understand, though I understand that it was necessary to tell the stories as realistically as possible. A rather depressing book and some of the stories seemed incomplete.
reviewed Say You're One of Them on + 6 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 1
This book was hard to read. The heartbreaking stories, and the knowing that this really does go on is almost too much to take. It is a great book, just not a happy book at all. I do recommend it for anyone that can handle the sadness.
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reviewed Say You're One of Them on + 26 more book reviews
This book was so sad and shocking! It really put life in Africa into perspective for me. I felt so sad for the children in these stories.

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