Winner of the Booker Prize when it was published in 1991, The Famished Road is a novel of post-colonial Nigeria. The author blends the spiritual world with the changing modern world to reveal the difficult birth of a nation struggling for independence.
This is one of those books that I didn’t particularly enjoy reading, and yet, I couldn’t stop thinking about it and talking about it. I greatly enjoyed the use of metaphor in this novel. The Famished Road, is a metaphor for the country’s road to independence – it hungrily eats away at the past, and leaves many casualties in it’s wake.
The problem I have with many prize-winning novels, is that they are often missing the one component which would lift them to five star status: a riveting story with characters a reader can care about. The spirit-world gimmick certainly has its place in this book, but at times it takes over and it is one of the reasons why The Famished Road is about 200 pages too long.
4 stars (out of 5)
Published in 1991