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Download Tiny Sunbirds, Far Away epub book
Author: Christie Watson
ISBN13: 978-1849163743
Title: Tiny Sunbirds, Far Away
Format: txt lrf lit rtf
ePUB size: 1246 kb
FB2 size: 1655 kb
DJVU size: 1303 kb
Language: English
Category: Genre Fiction
Publisher: Quercus Books (March 1, 2011)
Pages: 352

Tiny Sunbirds, Far Away by Christie Watson

Main Tiny Sunbirds, Far Away. Tiny Sunbirds, Far Away. ISBN 13: 9781590514672. As he walked away, his long body tilted to the suitcase side and gave him the shape of a question mark. I followed Grandma and Celestine to the area at the side of the outhouse where the rubbish was held until the rains came to wash it down the river. Things were already piling up. Plastic, wire, metal cans, broken bottles. They rustled when we arrived. Grandma had told me they saved it all every year, then God washed it away. I wondered where the rubbish ended up and who lived at the end of the river.

Watson originally tried writing Tiny Sunbirds, Far Away from the perspective of Dan, the white oil worker. How would Dan's perspective have changed the book? What insights might his narration have brought to the novel? What limitations might Watson have faced? From the very first line of the novel, "Father was a loud man," it's clear that her father is of crucial importance to Blessing  .

Tiny Sunbirds, Far Away.

Tiny Sunbirds, Far Away book. The author of this egalley, Christie Watson, which I have received from NetGalley, is born and raised in Nigeria. In reading this novel I am thrown into a world that feels completely foreign to me. The story follows the experiences of Blessing, a twelve-year-old.

Christie Watson is a British novelist and pediatric nurse. She holds an MA in Creative Writing from the University of East Anglia, where she won the Malcolm Bradbury Memorial Bursary, and has since published short fiction and other writings in numerous publications including Wasafiri, Mslexia, Index on Censorship, The Guardian, and The Telegraph. Watson teaches creative writing at various institutions including Birkbeck University, the Groucho Club, and Cambridge University

Yet this is not a bleak book: there is humour and love, especially in the growing relationship between Blessing and her grandmother, a traditional midwife. Absorbing and passionate. We hope to pass our goal by early January 2019. We want to say a huge thank you to everyone who has supported The Guardian so far. Please invest in our independent journalism today by making a year-end gift. Support The Guardian.

Tiny Sunbirds, Far Away is the witty and beautifully written story of one family's attempt to survive a new life they could never have imagined, struggling to find a deeper sense of identity along the wa. Winner of the 2011 Costa First Novel AwardWhen their mother catches their father with another woman, twelve year-old Blessing and her fourteen-year-old brother, Ezikiel, are forced to leave their comfortable home in Lagos for a village in the Niger Delta, to live with their mother's family.

About Tiny Sunbirds, Far Away. Winner of the 2011 Costa First Novel Award. When their mother catches their father with another woman, twelve year-old Blessing and her fourteen-year-old brother, Ezikiel, are forced to leave their comfortable home in Lagos for a village in the Niger Delta, to live with their mother’s family. Perfect pitch is not reserved for musicians; some novelists have it, too. From the very first page of her very first book, Christie Watson proves she possesses it, creating a voice that tells a tale we can’t put down.

WINNER OF THE COSTA FIRST NOVEL AWARD 2011. 'Everything changed after Mama found Father lying on top of another woman.' Blessing and her brother Ezikiel adore their larger-than-life father, their glamorous mother and their comfortable life in Lagos. But all that changes when their father leaves them for another woman. Their mother is fired from her job at the Royal Imperial Hotel - only married women can work there - and soon they have to quit their air-conditioned apartment to go and live with their grandparents in a compound in the Niger Delta. Adapting to life with a poor countryside family is a shock beyond measure after their privileged upbringing in Lagos. Told in Blessing's own beguiling voice, Tiny Sunbirds Far Away shows how some families can survive almost anything. At times hilarious, always poignant, occasionally tragic, it is peopled with characters you will never forget.
Reviews: 7
The book opens with a dedication by the author to a family who "helped her to fall in love with Nigeria." That seemed odd to me, and then it hit me that this book was not written by a Nigerian. Okay, fine. You don't have to be part of the culture to write about it. But what if this "love" for the culture is so new that not enough is even known about it to write an essay, let alone a novel? Here we go..
Now, forgive me for pointing this out, but it is a huge part of why I say the novel is "culturally ignorant," therefore I must mention this, and in all brutal honesty. The author Christie Watson is white and has no idea about Africans, their culture, or their physical make up. Numerous times throughout the book she mentions how a Black character gripped an object so hard their knuckles turned white. What?! Now, mind you, I am a brown skinned Black woman of Nigerian and other West African heritage. I even looked down at my own hand while I squeezed it tightly. Nope. My knuckles don't turn white at all. White people's knuckles do, but not Black people's. We stay brown. How did she miss this? HOW can Watson claim to be in love the culture and NOT know about the PEOPLE of the culture?
Also, she kept referring to hair that can be "taken off" as a "weave." That is not a weave. That is a wig. Wigs can be taken off. Weaves are tracks of hair sew onto cornrow braids that are attached to the scalp. That is Black hair 101. That is African, West African, Caribbean, and African American common knowledge, especially if you are a woman. And why is there hardly any mention of hair braiding sessions, a large part of African life? Meh. These things just stuck out for me and ruined the book in addition to the poor writing style and lack of character development and information about Nigeria in general.
And speaking of characters, is Blessing challenged? She seemed developmentally slow, especially for a 12 year old growing up in a large city such as Lagos. As another reviewer posted, she seemed like she was at off 6 years old at times. And she remained this way even after her father cheated on her mother, her brother got shot, and she delivered countless babies by sticking her hands in women's birth canals and pulling them out. How. Does. She. Remain. So. Dense? That was so unrealistic. I felt as if I were reading Dora the Black Explorer for a second. "Can YOU tell me why my father left my mommy?.....Good!"
Also, the Black men are the stereotypical angry Black men (way to go, Watson), the mother is sexually devious and abandons her daughter and son for a man who pays her (way to go again, Watson), the grandmother is the "magical Black person" in the novel (major side eye to that), and then there is a trademark Knight in Shining White Skin (reeeeeally?) who comes to save the day.
And the story is slow. And it doesn't mention much about Africa compared to other novels based in Africa.
I just can't with this book. Please look for other books based in Africa that are actually eye opening and not quickly put together by someone who recently learned Africa is not a country. Sheesh.
Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie is a good start.
greed style
This is a novel that profoundly affected me, as Blessing told her life story. From a world of privilege and luxury, she and her family are thrust suddenly into a life of wretched poverty and horror. The water and air are polluted from the oil companty's plant, the crops wither and die, and as a result, hunger and malnourisment--in one of the richest agricultural parts of Africa--are constant. Both of Blessing's grandparents are educated--her grandfather is a petroleum engineer, but has never found work in his field...despite the oil company almost in his backyard. All engineering jobs are filled by white men from American and Great Britain; local blacks are given "ghost jobs" (a desk, a computer, and no real work to do). Blessing's grandmother is a midwife, and well educated in sanitation and medicine. Had she been a white woman, she would probably be an OB/GYN doctor. She teaches Blessing the work of a midwife, and this work is what gives Blessing strength to endure the relentless poverty and terror they all live in. Teenage boys are given guns by the oil companies, who also employ "Kill and Go" police, and the villagers live in terror of them.

This book has a great deal to say about the politics of oil, of weapons, and of food. It's a hard story to read, in many places, as you realize how people are being destroyed, physically and psychologically, by these politics. It's a powerful message.
This book was recommended to me by another person and I loved it. Twelve-year-old Blessing, her brother Ezikiel and their mother have to give up their air-conditioned life in Lagos when Blessing's father leaves them. Their only option is to go home to her grandparents' compound in the delta. It's a profound shock to find themselves in terrible poverty, without clean water or electricity and subject to raids by the terrifying "Area boys". While oil companies profit from the "black gold", communities are being torn apart by sectarian violence. Blessing and Ezikiel are ambitious; he is determined to become a doctor, but the desperate situation they find themselves in corrodes dreams and corrupts souls. Yet this is not a bleak book: there is humour and love, especially in the growing relationship between Blessing and her grandmother, a traditional midwife
I initially wasn't sure if I liked this book, but as I got deeper into the story, it began to grab me. I initially thought they were just another dysfunctional family, but began to realize that some of what I saw as dysfunctional, was culture. I had to step back and shift "my" perspective. I enjoy reading foreign books for that very reason, seeking out other cultures and learning about the people and what drives them. As an avid reader I've learned that even in fiction there is truth. I finished this book knowing more about the people, region and their plight. If I would have had to rate midway through, it would have been maybe 2.5 stars, but I'm glad I did not stop there. It was a good book told from the perspective of 12 year old Blessing.
Wow! I could not out this one down! The story of a young girl who came of age despite and because of the adversity she faced! She was forced to leave her comfortable life for one of poverty, due to the indiscretions of her father. Blessing, her mother and brother were transformed in different ways by the circumstances they faced. Through it all, Blessing's grandmother was there for her, teaching her wisdom and skills that would change her life! Emotional and beautifully written story! A must read!