A Book and Film Blog

Monday, 19 November 2018

The Spider King's Daughter by Chibundu Onuzo


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First and foremost, let's give this book some cover appreciation ! I mean ... how beaut. It's still only £3 on the Kindle hence why I only have a digital copy but I'm definitely wishing I had a physical copy instead.

Chibundu Onuzo tells this story through the interchanging perspectives of her two protagonists: Abike Johnson and Runner G. 17 year old Abike Johnson is the spoilt daughter of the Spider King, a mysteriously wealthy man. Living in the lap of luxury in Lagos, Abike is surrounded by a sprawling mansion, cars, maids and pretty much everything money could buy. One afternoon being chauffeured through town, she stops for ice cream from a hawker, Runner G. His life is a world away from hers.

Unbeknownst to Abike, having lost everything he now hawks to support his younger sister and ailing mother. Abike and Runner G form an unlikely bond, one which soon leads to romance. But as the two learn more about each other, secrets from each other's past begin to unravel and threaten their relationship and the lives of those around them.

The Spider King's Daughter adopts the classic, forbidden romance trope but throws in a lot of twists and turns. Abike and Runner's romance is best described as a Shakespearean love story. Though complete opposites, the two instantly fall in love. And yet as a reader, I instantly had a lot of questions. The more they learn about each other, the less things add up. And as the secrets and mystique build up, the story quickly begins to read as a detective / thriller which will make you race to the end.

Onuzo's writing is so eloquent and her characters so provocative. Honestly, Abike quickly became one of my least favourite book characters *ever*. It says a lot of a writer's talent when they're able to evoke such strong reactions from their readers concerning certain characters. This serves the plot well as it's laced with mystery through and particularly fast paced, aided no doubt by the alternating chapters.

It's difficult to say too much without giving away major plot twists but if you're on the hunt for a quick page turner, some sweet escapism perhaps? The Spider King's Daughter is the one.

4.5/5


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