Book Review: The Visit by Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie

I am loving the short Amazon original reads. My next read is The Visit, a short story book of just 20 odd pages. Written by Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie, the speculative story was an unsettling read. The story imagines an alternate universe where the world is dominated by women. Things we hear, and things we bear as a part of the patriarchal society can seem so odd if the roles are reversed.

For example the below conversation,

So this is why you don’t work, too much money. And you told me it was because you wanted to take care of the children.”

“It is. Or it was. Now they are in Primary 3 and they are old enough, but Amara won’t let me work.”

“What do you mean ‘won’t let you work’?” Eze asked, eyes narrowed.

“I’ve been out of the job market for so long that the only positions I can get now would be entry level, and she says it will look terrible for someone of her position if her husband has such a low level job.”

Haven’t we all come across such wives in real life? Some talented, capable souls, want to have a career but are stopped by their spouses or in-laws. So why does it feel awkward to read about such a husband?

Or take another instance, where two men going to a club are stopped by police, doubting their intentions.
“If I had known you were somebody’s husband, I would at least show you some respect, even if you are dressed like a prostitute.”

And men have to justify their enjoyment.
“If we are men who go to a club to celebrate a birthday, it’s more respectable than just being men who go to a club to have fun.”

Oh, so relatable.

And while the world is discussing the overturn of Roe v. Wade in the USA, the below piece is just the alarm required for the senators(if they care to read).

male masturbation would remain illegal, punishable by up to fifteen years in prison.

The American president’s face was in close-up as she said, “I applaud the court for this just and moral decision. We must never lose sight of what this is about—a waste of a potential child.”

This story managed to say so much in so few words. The author doesn’t waste a word.

However, the ending was a bit disappointing for me. The story seemed to end abruptly. As a reader I wanted to know more, but, perhaps that was the intention of the writing. To let the readers think for themselves.

Overall a thought-provoking read.
The book is free on Amazon. Get it here

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