5 out of 5 stars
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“Adoka Son: Childhood Memoirs of an African” by Ad’Obe Obe is an interesting book where the author tells a unique tale of growing up in a remote setting during the emergence of western civilization in his village. It’s a book that showcases the rich ancestral and cultural heritage of the Idoma kingdom.
I love how the author’s narrative style creates a vivid imagination in the minds of the readers as events unfold. There’s the theme of reincarnation, as Alechenu is believed to be Grandma Ob’ikwu’s late husband. The number of names given to Emmanuel by different people, such as Alechenu, Obonya, Ada, Adam, and Ad’Obe, were unique and fascinating.
The land of Idoma is a place where marrying multiple wives is the norm. However, I was surprised to find that Papa had snatched Obe’s mother from her lawfully wed husband. The rich folktales, songs, and storytelling are another aspect I love about the book. I like the way the traditional rites were performed, such as circumcision, among others. I also enjoyed the conversation between Catechist Gregory and Papa, who discussed the switch from telling time traditionally to knowing the time with the use of a clock, the new white man’s lifestyle.
Papa’s open-mindedness to embracing the white man’s religion for his son and people is another thing that strikes me. He’s also in support of teaching his son English, Igbo, and Idoma, as he believes it will pave the way for him. I particularly admire the bond shared between father and son. I’m equally amazed at the author’s recollection of his childhood memories, as he’s able to put down the highlights of his childhood and upbringing. He’s well-detailed at outlining the names of people and the specific places where events take place.
There’s nothing I disliked about this book. The author presented the facts in a realistic way. I found some errors, which can easily be corrected by more editing touches. This book was professionally edited.
I rate it 5 out of 5 stars. It is recommended to anyone who seeks to learn about a new culture, the advent of western civilization into Africa, traditional rites, and the ancestral heritage of the Idoma kingdom.
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