You ever get that great feeling when a character’s voice just leaps off the page? You feel like you are part of the conversation with the character and not just a passive observer. It’s a great feeling, and Oyeyemi accomplishes it throughout this strange and wonderful novel somewhat inspired by the Snow White fairy tale. All of the narrators are definitely distinguished and very thought provoking.

In addition to the wonderfully rich, flawed and dynamic characters, Oyeyemi has constructed a plot that allows her to strip away its elements, its secrets, slowly and elegantly, in a fashion that’s both magic and magical (the scene with Bird wrapped in the flag? Amazing.)

The other reason I admired this book so much is that it defies classification. Realistic? Fantasy? Who knows? Who cares?

It’s great and it merits re-reading. But I will find some of her others first. If you recommend another Oyeyemi, let me know which one to move on to next.

http://www.picador.com/helenoyeyemi

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