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Tiny Sunbirds, Far Awayby Christie Watson
Synopses & Reviews
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. Without running water or electricity, Warri is at first a nightmare for Blessing. Her mother is gone all day and works suspiciously late into the night to pay thechildren's school fees. Her brother, once a promising student, seems to be falling increasingly under the influence of the local group of violent teenage boys calling themselves Freedom Fighters. Her grandfather, a kind if misguided man, is trying on Islam as his new religion of choice, and is even considering the possibility of bringing in a second wife.
But Blessing's grandmother, wise and practical, soon becomes a beloved mentor, teaching Blessing the ways of the midwife in rural Nigeria. Blessing is exposed to the horrors of genital mutilation and the devastation wrought on the environment byBritish and American oil companies. As Warri comes to feel like home, Blessing becomes increasingly aware of the threats to its safety, both from its unshakable but dangerous traditions and the relentless carelessness ofthe modern world. 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 deepersense of identity along the way.
Set in rural Nigeria, "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 way.
After her parents separate, Blessing's mother moves with her and her brother Ezikiel to live in a village in the Niger Delta, where Blessing gradually adjusts, but Ezikiel soon leads a dangerous life as a boy soldier.
About the Author
\Christie Watson trained as a pediatric nurse at Great Ormond Street Hospital in London and worked as a senior staff nurse and educator for over ten years before joining the University of East Anglia for her MA in Creative Writing. There she won the Malcolm Bradbury Bursary for her work. Watson lives in South London with her Nigerian Muslim partner and their large dual-heritage family. This is her first novel.
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