Friday, February 26, 2010

Review: From a Crooked Rib


From a Crooked Rib
From a Crooked Rib by Nuruddin Farah

My rating: 4 of 5 stars



I struggled with how to rate this book. As a feminist, of course I admired Farah's portrayal of the sexist culture that oppresses women in Somalia and how a struggle against the current cultural beliefs and structures are difficult, if not impossible to break out of, for the individual.

For Ebla, the main character, every time she attempts to find freedom and independence, she further ties herself to people whom mistreat and take advantage over her. As the narrative continues, it is difficult to understand Ebla's true intentions as she struggles against these forces, and the intentions of those she finds herself depending on and using her.

I found Farah's narrative difficult to follow at times, and found the partial portrayal into Ebla's thoughts and actions frustratingly seperated from the actual core of the book's unfolding plot. I believe Farah meant to keep the reader disconnected from Ebla and the other characters to help convey Ebla's confusion as she encountered various situations and characters throughout the narrative, not knowing who she could trust or not trust, and how the intentions of each character may not be what they seem.




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