Book review · novella

Book review : Binti, Home

Binti: Home (Binti #2), by Nnedi Okorafor

binti-homeDescription: (from Macmillan)

It’s been a year since Binti and Okwu enrolled at Oomza University. A year since Binti was declared a hero for uniting two warring planets. A year since she found friendship in the unlikeliest of places.
And now she must return home to her people, with her friend Okwu by her side, to face her family and face her elders.
But Okwu will be the first of his race to set foot on Earth in over a hundred years, and the first ever to come in peace.
After generations of conflict can human and Meduse ever learn to truly live in harmony?

Expected publication: January 31st 2017, part of the Winter Line-Up 

A review copy (e-galley) of this book was provided by the publisher. Some things might change in the final copy.

I was so excited when I got this e-galley because Binti was a favourite from last year. It won the Nebula and Hugo Awards for best Novella so that’s a pretty big deal!

I would recommend to re-read Binti before reading Binti: Home. Especially if you have a memory that is as bad as mine. I remembered quite a lot since I read it twice and loved it but I think I still should have read it a third time before starting Home! The author puts details here and there from the first volume without being too obvious that she was being thoughtful for readers with bad memory. It did made me remember some important events or little details. I love when authors do that, because I can’t always reread a book before the sequel, even if I’d like to. Still, it’s a better experience if you remember everything correctly!

So we find Binti a year later, at the Oomza University, still friend with Okwu. She’s suffering from the aftermath of what happened on the ship that brought her to the university but she’s working on it. It’s not often enough that books address the trauma that the characters have to live with and I liked how it was handled here.

Plus, despite the fact that it made me extremely uncomfortable, I knew I needed help.

The biggest part of the story is set on Earth where Binti has come home, because she felt she had to. Let’s not forget that she ran away because no one from her people had actually been into space before, and especially not to study mathematics (at a level I can’t even comprehend).
But she has to face the consequences of her flight, how it affected her family and even the political side of it because of the way she was physically changed by the Meduses.
She realises her future is changed forever. But this story will also contribute to change it even more.

Plus, I didn’t want to turn back. Why don’t I ever want to do what I’m supposed to?

I felt so many things reading Home, I felt Binti’s pain and anger. But also her excitation and slight fear about all these changes. So many choices to make, so many obstacles to overcome. Growing up is hard but for Binti it is even harder. I felt myself revolted alongside her by the patriarchal society that is still predominant in her culture. Binti is 17 years old, she goes through so much and yet, she remains intelligent and caring, empathic and hopeful. She’s a hero basically, if we weren’t already sure of that after the first volume.
I could sum up Home by: SO MANY EMOTIONS.

I’ve been planets away and learned about and met people from other worlds. It’s wrong that I don’t even know of my own… my own people.

My only issue with Home? The big cliffhanger at the end!!! This novella was amazing but unlike Binti that can stand on its own, this one builds up to a third volume that I assume will be an epic conclusion to this beautiful series! (but I don’t know, maybe it won’t be a conclusion, I’d love to have a loooooong series of novellas in the world of Binti actually! We will see, in Nnedi Okorafor I trust!)
There’s also this character who makes an appearance at the beginning, Haifa, a cheerful transgender woman, and I really hope we’ll see more of her in the third volume!

Basically, Binti: Home is emotionally exhausting in a very good way. Just like Binti, I recommend it to everyone and I’ll buy it as soon as possible!

I don’t have a phyical copy of this second volume but here’s a picture of the first one ❤

3 thoughts on “Book review : Binti, Home

  1. I had mixed feelings about the first book (loved the character, but I thought the story pacing was out of whack and didn’t like how conveniently the resolution was handled) but you make this sequel sound SO GOOD. I’ll definitely have to continue 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Aw sorry you had issues with the first one. But yeah I felt there was much more happening in this sequel (I think there are more pages so that can explain it) and it really dwelled into the consequences and I think people who didn’t loved the first might still enjoy the second!:) at least I hope!

      Liked by 1 person

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