Little A/New Harvest, 2013
Fiction; 128 pgs
This is one of those novels in which the language washes over me as I read, like an ocean wave coming in and then retreating. Rebecca Walker has written a beautiful and heart wrenching story about knowing one's self, and, most of all, about love.
Farida, as our unnamed main character comes to be called, is a recent college graduate who sets out to explore the world with her roommate and friend, Miriam, wanting to experience life and little known places. They aren't interested in the cities or the tourist culture, but rather want to take in the continent's raw beauty. Farida feels a kinship with those around her as she travels through African countries. She finds herself identifying to some degree with those she meets. It is a connection that mesmerizes her and draws her in.
When she meets Adé, a local fisherman on a coastal island in Kenya, he is everything she longs for, including a tie to a land she so desperately wants to belong. Adé is sensual and thoughtful. The two fall in love and Farida wants nothing more than to establish her life on the island where Adé grew up.
The cultural piece of the story presented a land that is both harsh and also beautiful. It is clear the narrator of the story is from a first world country and takes a more romantic view of Africa. And as the story progresses, the ideal image Farida has created of Africa, and Kenya, in particular, begins to crumble as not only her love for Adé is tested, but that of the country she longs to call home.
I was really taken with Rebecca Walker's imagery and tone throughout the novel. The writing is almost poetic, in a sense. It really is beautiful. The story itself was poignant. When I finished, I sat there for a moment, just wanting to absorb what I had read more fully. It's one of those books that is not easy to move on from, at least not right away.
To learn more about Rebecca Walker and her books, please visit the author's website.
I hope you will check out what others had to say about Adé: A Love Story on the TLC Book Tours route!
Many thanks to the TLC Book Tours for the opportunity to be a part of this book tour. The publisher provided an e-copy of the book for review.
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