Thursday, March 25, 2021

Top ten novels set in villages

Claire Fuller was born in Oxfordshire, England, and has an MA in Creative and Critical Writing from the University of Winchester.

She has written four novels: Our Endless Numbered Days, which won the Desmond Elliott Prize; Swimming Lessons; Bitter Orange; and Unsettled Ground.

"The best novels with a village at their heart will play with our assumptions about village life and not make even the most gossipy old woman a cliche," Fuller writes at the Guardian. She tagged ten of her favorite novels set in villages, including:
Things Fall Apart by Chinua Achebe

Achebe writes his characters, no matter how reprehensible, without judgment – letting the reader decide. Though really there is no decision to make: Okonkwo, the greatest wrestler across nine villages in Nigeria in the 1890s, is a man who regularly mistreats his wives and children, but when a white man comes on a bicycle and many more follow, they are even more brutal. Though the women in this novel are not the main characters, their daily duties, together with the village rituals, will keep you captivated.
Read about another entry on the list.

Things Fall Apart is among Jeff Somers's twenty-five books you probably should have read already, Barnaby Phillips' top ten books about Nigeria, Pushpinder Khaneka's three best books on Nigeria, Hallie Ephron's ten best books for a good cry, Helon Habila's three books to help understand Nigeria, and Martin Meredith's ten books to read on Africa.

--Marshal Zeringue