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She Would Be King
She Would Be King: A Novel | Waytu Moore
A novel of exhilarating range, magical realism, and historya dazzling retelling of Liberias formation Waytu Moores powerful debut novel, She Would Be King, reimagines the dramatic story of Liberias early years through three unforgettable characters who share an uncommon bond. Gbessa, exiled from the West African village of Lai, is starved, bitten by a viper, and left for dead, but still she survives. June Dey, raised on a plantation in Virginia, hides his unusual strength until a confrontation with the overseer forces him to flee. Norman Aragon, the child of a white British colonizer and a Maroon slave from Jamaica, can fade from sight when the earth calls him. When the three meet in the settlement of Monrovia, their gifts help them salvage the tense relationship between the African American settlers and the indigenous tribes, as a new nation forms around them. Moores intermingling of history and magical realism finds voice not just in these three characters but also in the fleeting spirit of the wind, who embodies an ancient wisdom. If she was not a woman, the wind says of Gbessa, she would be king. In this vibrant story of the African diaspora, Moore, a talented storyteller and a daring writer, illuminates with radiant and exacting prose the tumultuous roots of a country inextricably bound to the United States. She Would Be King is a novel of profound depth set against a vast canvas and a transcendent debut from a major new author.
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Currey
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Pickpick

I was expecting an historical fiction about the formation of Liberia and found myself in a Fantasy super hero tale. Gbessa, our MC, is a wonderful character whose life unfolds in unexpected ways. The other characters were not as well formed but I liked the idea of them. Good first outing for this author. #sjp #bookclubcentral #liberia #readingaroundtheworld

10 likes1 stack add
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KathrynElise
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Pickpick

This was an odd read, but I really enjoyed it. I‘m not usually one for anything focused on modern history, but by blending African-American history with mystical tales of witches and curses, Moore managed to have me hooked from the start. The only thing that I think may have added to the book is more detail on each of the characters - I found I just didn‘t develop any strong attachments to these characters. Overall though, a pretty great read 👍🏼

KathrynElise Also works for the #popsugar2019 prompt: “A book written by an author from Asia, Africa or South America” (Moore was born in Liberia 🇱🇷) 2w
5 likes1 comment
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KathrynElise
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“If she was not a girl or if she was not a woman... She would be king”. - Wayétu Moore, ‘She Would Be King‘

Of all the lines in this wonderful book, this resonated with me the most. ❤️?

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KathrynElise
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Keen to make a start on this baby and what better way to do that than with a coffee in hand? Yay for Saturday mornings 📖☕️

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MallenNC
She Would Be King | Waytu Moore
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This book is a retelling of the creation of the nation of Liberia and is the most recent book I‘ve read that is set in #Africa. I listened to the audiobook, which is read by the author. I really liked her reading style. #LetsTravelJuly

OriginalCyn620 👌🏻📚❤️ 4w
BookwormM Sounds good for reading around the world 4w
26 likes2 stack adds3 comments
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essence_dionne
Pickpick

I didn't know "She Would be King" was historical fiction about Liberia when I first started reading, and ended up being pleasantly surprised. I loved Norman Aragon, June Dey, and especially Gbessa. I wanted them to win; to get through all hurdles that came their way. This is a book I'd come back to.

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essence_dionne
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I wanted to read this because I thought the title was dope... I didn't know what I was about to get into, and it's been a pleasant surprise. When I have time to read, I have a hard time putting it down.
#SheWouldBeKing #HappyFriday #books

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MallenNC
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Pickpick

I enjoyed this book, which was recommended for me by @bookriot through their Tailored Book Recommendations (TBR) program. I listened to it and that made me a little confused at times about what was going on, but overall I enjoyed it. There's magical realism in this story, which is something I don't usually read. What I liked best were the strong women characters. I also liked hearing the author read her own work.

21 likes1 stack add
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SoManyBooksNotEnoughTime
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Mehso-so

"They told us we had no history but darkness, so they kept the books away for fear we might understand the truth better, and thus find those lost selves"

I had a tough time getting into this book in the beginning, but really starting enjoying it about a third of the way through. I loved learning the history of the founding of Liberia. For once, I actually feel like this story would be stronger portrayed on screen than as a novel.

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MallenNC
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My current audiobook. I‘m just starting to get a good idea of what‘s happening but I like it. The author does the narration and she is great.

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JulietteGF
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Mehso-so

I'm glad I got to read this book. Despite a difficult beginning (quite fuzzy), I was able to really enter into the story. It reads well, I liked the use of magical realism which here looks more like tales & legends. It was a very interesting book to read, I just wished it had been more detailed so the characters would have been more developed. It's between so-so and pick...

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Plaidsticks
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Pickpick

💛💛💛 So glad I ended up buying the audiobook instead of going with the physical book from the library, thus I could binge listen. So good. So, so good. Probably my favorite book so far this year. #audiobook

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deadrabbitsbooks
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This book is intense already 😧

28 likes1 stack add
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deadrabbitsbooks
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Editor-in-Chief Katie Rainey is reading Wayetu Moore‘s She Would Be King with her 9th graders this year ❤️
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#bookstagram #bookstagrammer #amwriting #amreading #writerslife #writingcommunity #writersofinstagram #readingseries

46 likes2 stack adds
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tricours
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Pickpick

I‘m a but disappointed with myself for not paying more attention during the first half of the book. I thought these were short stories at first, then when I realized they weren‘t I also realized that I should have figured that out earlier 🤦‍♀️ Great book though!

37 likes1 stack add
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hdhubbard
Bailedbailed

6/10 Struggled to keep track of the characters and story line. Stopped a 1/3 way in, may try to read again at a later date

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amma-keep-reading
Pickpick

I read this book like I used to savor candy bars when I was a little girl: enjoying the book in small chunks to extend the experience and savor the magic of it.
📚
This is beautifully written story.

3 likes1 stack add
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razmanda
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Pickpick

Actual perfection. Three blessed (or cursed) souls fight for versions of freedom, intermingling with one another and the history of the founding of Liberia. So, so good. Magical realism at its finest, paying tribute to African folklore and with lyrical prose. All the stars. All of them. #readingblackout #onceyougoblackout

30 likes1 stack add
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razmanda
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31 likes1 stack add
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TheNextBook
Pickpick

I loved this book. Loved the way the three different narratives converged and separated. Loved the way Moore explored the different aspects of the world from colonialism, racism, colorism, classism, superstition and religion. Her writing was haunting and unsettling yet stark. I couldn‘t put it down.

30 likes1 stack add
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TheNextBook
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Started this today and so far I‘m really enjoying it. She has done a really great job with world building and I am here for all of it. I‘m halfway through my TBR pile and so far this month I have not been disappointed. #readBlackwomen

57 likes6 stack adds
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LibLib
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Mehso-so

I wanted to love this book so much, but it didn't meet up to my expectations. I give it a "so-so" rating because the 1st half was excellent and made me go through so many emotions but the second half, *le sigh*, it fell flat. There was so much build up in the 1st half but that momentum was unfortunately lost as the story continued. I recommend to read only because the first part was so good and unique and who knows, maybe you can look past rest.

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Mel
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21 likes2 stack adds
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Mixedreader
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Pickpick

Incredible book. Just finished for #24in48

23 likes1 stack add
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shaynarae
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Pickpick

I really enjoyed everything about this book, but I was slow reading it and often found myself distracted and having to reread passages. I can‘t figure out why. Possibly because it‘s written in the style of a long-form folktale and I‘m simply used to this style in short story format. Regardless, I still think this is a book worth picking up.

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strandbookstore
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Pickpick

Here's a #staffpick from Basement bookseller Andrew: "I love books that feel like a folktale, that are familiar without being stale. Wayétu Moore‘s debut She Would Be King feels like a favorite story I haven't heard since childhood. Magical realism at its best, refracting the founding of Liberia in a prism so that, through the other side, we may see our modern world all the more clearly. Equal parts funny, sweet, romantic, brutal, and wondrous." ✨

71 likes8 stack adds
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Jeannie
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“Kindred souls will always collide.”

This is a beautifully written book. I‘m about halfway done.

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SandraG
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She would be Queen ijs!!! Yes! I‘ve waited for this book and now I have it! Happy Reading to me📗🥰

6 likes1 stack add
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Redwritinghood
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Mehso-so

I found the story very uneven and some characters added solely for interest and not for the story. The first part was stronger with some good character-development, but the second part failed to use those characters to their potential. While centered around an interesting part of history, the book overall was bland. 2.5⭐️ #indiebuddyreads

mklong Well said Jerrie! I couldn‘t agree more. 8mo
Redheadrambles @Redwritinghood yes completely agree in fact I think we all did in the end which is interesting! 8mo
71 likes2 comments
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Jolynne
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Pickpick

An interesting snippet of history focused on the beginning of Liberia told with touches of magical realism.

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Owlizabeth
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#weekendplans let‘s see how much reading the kiddos let me get in!

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mklong
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Mehso-so

Sigh. I really thought I would love this one. There are some brilliant elements and the story is a fascinating one, however it just never quite comes together convincingly. The pacing is very strange as well. At times, it feels so rushed that the characters aren‘t developed and at others, it feels weighted and plodding. It‘s not terrible by any means, but it isn‘t great either.

#indiebuddyreads

Redwritinghood That‘s too bad. I‘ve barely made a dent in this one. It‘s been a busy weekend. I hope I can finish soon, though. (edited) 9mo
Redheadrambles @mklong yes I 💯 agree with you here the pacing is odd. I gave it the benefit of the doubt “pick” but it‘s on the edge and I was willing it to be better as I think the story had potential 9mo
61 likes3 comments
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Redheadrambles
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Pickpick

⭐️⭐️⭐️

This a tough review to write because my feelings on this book are so mixed. On one hand I learned a terrific amount about the foundation story of Liberia. But it is certainly a novel of two parts, the first section I enjoyed much more than the second.
The magical realism had a tendency to drift into a super-hero caper in parts. A solid if not entirely successful debut.

Bring on more stories from Liberia !

28 likes3 stack adds1 comment
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Beckys_Books
Pickpick

I'm an engineer, so magical realism doesn't always work for me. I like Real. And I like Obvious Magic. Magical elements that make me question accepted reality - not so much. But, I LOVED THIS BOOK. it's based on the founding of Liberia. The desire for freedom by the 3 main characters is also the beginning of the nation's formation. But, like most people grounded in reality I now want to know the "real" story of Liberia.

Ruthiella Love it when a book surprises me like that! 😀 (edited) 9mo
Megabooks Sounds fantastic!! 9mo
57 likes4 stack adds2 comments
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Beckys_Books
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I love to read by the Christmas tree in the morning before getting ready for work. Only 50 pages left in this book, but I don't think I have enough time to finish it this morning.

Amiable Such a beautiful scene! 9mo
Chelsea.Poole Reading by the Christmas tree is just so cozy! I feel the same way...wish I had time to do it this morning! 9mo
CouronneDhiver 😍😍 9mo
Daisey ❤️ 🎄 9mo
75 likes4 comments
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Beckys_Books
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Iced coffee sounded good with breakfast today even though it is only 15F outside.

Tamra Perfect breakfast! 9mo
63 likes1 comment
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Beckys_Books
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Snow storm on the way? Bring it on. I've got a book and a blanket and no reason to leave the house.

Christine Bliss! 9mo
CouronneDhiver Lovely! 9mo
Cathythoughts Oh definitely! Bring it on .... 👍🏻❤️ 9mo
JacqMac Sounds like a perfect day. 9mo
nibech Perfect! 9mo
73 likes1 stack add5 comments
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Beckys_Books
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In my happy place...

What you can't see is The Christmas Chronicles playing on Netflix above the fireplace. It's the most wonderful time of year!

Planning to shop small tomorrow at our local downtown. There are a couple of lovely bookstores I plan to go to.

Jee_HookedOnBookz Book shopping is the best kinda shopping! 9mo
MicheleinPhilly I‘m all about Small Business Saturday. I love it! 9mo
63 likes2 comments
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Beckys_Books
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Working my way through my recent purchases. Picked this for my next read because I can't handle the chunkster or another political nonfiction read.

reluctantangeleno Love the visual checklist! 9mo
48 likes1 comment
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LizzieLou
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Really interesting story. Heavy but important history.

16 likes1 stack add
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SW-T
Pickpick

A reimagining of the founding of Liberia, with fantastical elements woven into the story. Hard to describe but a compelling read.

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SW-T
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A good book is the best of friends, the same today and for ever.

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LauraBeth
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I picked this up and now I can‘t stop reading it.

Annl That sounds so good! I stacked it and will see if my local library has it. Thanks 9mo
ValerieAndBooks Looks good— stacking. Have you featured a Michael pick lately 😊? 9mo
LauraBeth @ValerieAndBooks I‘ll have to look at Michael‘s picks next time I‘m there! 🤗 9mo
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LauraBeth @Annl I hope they have it! 9mo
Annl @LauraBeth I got the book! I am excited to kick back and read it this 3 day weekend! 9mo
LauraBeth @Annl 🙌🙌🙌 9mo
Suet624 Oh, that was a Powell‘s subscription book that I received a while back. I‘m glad to hear you like it. 9mo
100 likes5 stack adds7 comments
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BestOfFates
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Library book haul!

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jveezer
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Sampling a sheng puerh from crimsonlotustea.com with my new read. #ReadWomen #tea

7 likes1 stack add
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BookBelle84
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Library #bookhaul this morning! Recommendations for what I should read first?

SamHeartCoffee Intrigued by what Reese Witherspoon would have to say! 10mo
29 likes1 comment
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lalatiburona
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New #indiespensable book haul! 😍😍

jveezer Did that come today? Where‘s mine? 10mo
lalatiburona @jveezer maybe I hacked their system and diverted all your mail to me 🤗🤗 10mo
jveezer Why do we have the same lit subscriptions when you are gonna get my books anyway as soon as you push me off Manchu Picchu? 10mo
See All 7 Comments
jveezer @lalatiburona you should quit Powells and do the Strand Books one, or Europa Editions,... 10mo
catiewithac The almonds are amazing!!! 10mo
lalatiburona @jveezer why haven't we thought of this before... Divide and conquer! 10mo
lalatiburona @catiewithac I can't wait to try them! I'm at the point during allergies where you can't taste anything so I'm waiting patiently!! 10mo
9 likes1 stack add7 comments