30 of 36 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars
Man's inhumanity to man, 21 Jun 2007
What a wonderful, well researched account of ordinary people's lives in Biafra, following Nigeria's declaration of war on the newborn country.
I lived in Lagos, Nigeria in the late 1960s and travelled extensively throughout the whole of Nigeria. I recall accounts of the dreadful atrocities carried out by the Hausa against the Igbo in Kano and Kaduna. To avoid further harassment thousands of Igbo returned to their homeland in Eastern Nigeria and the new country of Biafra was born. Biafra opted for secession. The Federal Government of Nigeria realized they would lose the oil-fields and therefore refused to accept Biafra's secession, and declared war.
Half of a Yellow Sun reflects criticism of many countries attitudes to Biafra but Britain, quite rightly, is singled out as the major overseas enemy of Biafra. Britain was totally ruthless in their support for the Federal Government, despite the awful starvation and inevitable deaths of thousands of Biafrans.
The writer's insight into Englishmen's superior, patronising attitudes to foreigners is spot on and brought a smile to my face. Her observations are balanced by comments on some aspects of Igbo life and the actions of some Igbo during the Biafran War.
The writer brings to life areas of Eastern Nigeria I visited and loved, Enugu, Onitsha, Aba, Port Harcourt and many others.
The story of the people related in this book is fiction but cleverly interwoven in the plot is a true and vivid account of the slaughter of Biafra. `Man's inhumanity to man' was sadly clear for all to see from the reports which emanated from Biafra during and after the war.
The writer hints at the fact that Biafra still lives on in the hearts of the Igbo. Who knows what the future may bring.