She Would Be King by Wayetu Moore
Wayétu Moore’s powerful debut novel, She Would Be King, reimagines the dramatic story of Liberia’s early years through three unforgettable characters who share an uncommon bond. Gbessa, exiled from the West African village of Lai, is starved, bitten by a viper, and left for dead, but still she survives. June Dey, raised on a plantation in Virginia, hides his unusual strength until a confrontation with the overseer forces him to flee. Norman Aragon, the child of a white British colonizer and a Maroon slave from Jamaica, can fade from sight when the earth calls him. When the three meet in the settlement of Monrovia, their gifts help them salvage the tense relationship between the African American settlers and the indigenous tribes, as a new nation forms around them.
I do not understand how this book doesn’t have more hype. Everything about this book is fantastic. I was so blown away by everything, and could not put it down.
The overall story was really interesting. It starts as three vignettes that could easily be standalone stories, but that eventually converge. And the converging worked so well and was expertly executed. It is so well-written, and descriptive yet clear and not overly done.
The story is from a really interesting perspective, with an omnipresent narrator watching the three main characters. This isn’t something I typically enjoy, but it worked so well in this story. The three main characters were so interesting and such well-written characters. Each of their powers matched their individual vignette and background, and they also matched each other.
I will be talking about this book for the rest of my blogging career, and I cannot recommend it enough.
But anyway, those are my thoughts! Have you read this book? What were your thoughts? Have I convinced you to read it? Let me know!