Romance, mystery and revenge all feature in this juxtaposition of two realities colliding in the most intimate of ways.
The Spider King's Daughters is a fresh take on the classic coming of age story. Amidst the sweltering streets, loud with the hustle & bustle of Lagos, a hawker and an entitled young girl's paths cross. Starstruck and heart-beating, it was like at first sight for Abike. She stalks and eventually coerces her driver to fake a bad engine. She hoped the hawker would come to her rescue and guess what? he did. Predictable, I know. Fortunately the rest of the novel isn't the same.
I'm the type of reader who likes to stick to a character. Once I like you, I'm on your side for better or for worse... I'm loyal like that. But this case was different 🙄 There was just something about her. I couldn't stand to be on Abike's side for too long. I liked her, I loathed her, I could relate with her (worrying about what to wear on her first date, skipping class to live the babygirl life *PG13* , playing her first kiss over and over again), until she did some dumb sh*t and I was back where I started. Chibundu kept me guessing. In the end I neither loved nor hated Abike, but at least I understood her.
The first few pages had me a little bit confused and I was so sure there were lines maybe even pages missing. I started questioning Chibundu but I WAS WRONG. Even though the narrative was all over the place, I kept reading and things were revealed. Once I figured out what was going on, I realized just how brilliant it was to tell this particular story in that way.
It's great when writers assume the role of scientists and teleport readers with words that come alive as vivid images. But when the narrative technique reflects that same journey, it's truly creative. I guess that's why Chibundu was shortlisted for the Commonwealth Book Prize in 2012 and several others after that.
If you're looking for a fresh and light page-turner, pick up a copy of The Spider King's Daughter.
RATING ⭐️⭐️⭐️/ ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️