Thursday, April 2, 2015

Where Women are Kings; Christie Watson

Where Women are Kings; Christie Watson
Other Press - 2015


Where Women Are Kings, is a powerful story but a tough one to read as well. It deals with an emotionally and physically abused child.

Seven year old Elijah believes two things: that his mother loved him very much, even though he was taken from her, and that he is a wizard - a wizard that is sometimes made to do bad things.

Elijah is the son of Deborah and Akpan, Nigerian immigrants living outside of London. His mother tells him that he was born of love, when the couple moved to the UK from Nigeria. However, when Akpan dies unexpectedly when Elijah is just an infant, Deborah is unable to cope with the loss of her husband. She quickly spirals out of control into madness. Convinced by a wacko Bishop that her son needs an exorcism, poor Elijah is sadly the victim here.

In and out of foster homes Elijah is adopted by a kind, patient, mixed race couple. Obi is an immigration lawyer and Nikki works with rescue dogs. Although Elijah seems to adjust well at times, his inner "wizard" demon is never far away.

The author has done a very good job creating a powerful, believable story. The characters are well developed and through alternating chapters the reader gets to understand the roots of Elijah's troubled past and difficult present. At just 250 pages, the book is a quick read, yet one that has stayed with me as well.

4.5/5 stars

(review copy)

7 comments:

  1. I find stories like that disturbing and compelling at the same time.

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  2. Diane, this sounds quite powerful and profound. I will keep an eye out for this book. Excellent review!

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  3. Sounds like one I'm going to have to read. I often feel I "need" something this powerful to remind me of the greater world.

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  4. For a moment, I was thinking that this author sounds very familiar and then remembered her Tiny Sunbirds, Far Away, which I just recently bought and am looking forward to reading. Where Women are Kings sounds just as compelling!

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  5. This sounds interesting except the wizard part...I'm normally turned off by fantasy stuff. Was it palatable here?

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  6. I doubt I could read this. I will be troubled for a long time.

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  7. I would like that simply because she works with rescue dogs!

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