Home Feed
Home
Search
Search
Add Review, Blurb, Quote
Add
Activity
Activity
Profile
Profile
The Death of Vivek Oji
The Death of Vivek Oji: A Novel | Akwaeke Emezi
145 posts | 106 read | 99 to read
A dramatic and deeply moving novel of three generations coping with secrets, violence, and grief, against a backdrop of political and social unrest. They burned down the market on the day Vivek Oji died. One afternoon, in a town in southeastern Nigeria, a mother opens her front door to discover the lifeless body of her son wrapped in fabric on the welcome mat. The story of that child, Vivek Oji, is the story of two families from disparate cultures who came together in a time of upheaval, and of Viveks struggle to be true to a self whose spirit and longings defy conventional expectations. Raised by a privileged, distant father and an understanding but overprotective mother, Vivek suffers disorienting blackouts, fugue states that disrupt all connection between self and surroundings. As adolescence gives way to adulthood, Vivek finds solace in friendships with the warm, boisterous daughters of the Nigerwives, foreign-born women resettled in the area. But Viveks closest bond is with Osita, the worldly, high-spirited cousin whose teasing confidence masks a guarded private life. As their relationship deepensand Osita struggles to understand his friend's escalating crisisthe mystery of Viveks behavior gives way to a heart-stopping act of violence in a moment of transcendent freedom. Propulsively readable, teeming with vivid and unforgettable characters, The Death of Vivek Oji is a story of family and friendship that challenges expectations at every turn. It is a major step forward from a writer of rare insight into the porous barriers between body and identity, spirit, and self.
Amazon Indiebound Barnes and Noble WorldCat Goodreads LibraryThing
Pick icon
100%
blurb
rainbowlibrarian
post image

You know those books that gut you, make you gasp, leave you wanting to hold the characters close, and just…ughhh? This is one of those for me. A bittersweet read that felt all too real.

review
Kitta
post image
Pickpick

A writer really coming into their own! Emezi tells us the story of the life and death of Vivek Oji. Beautifully told and rich language you can sink your teeth into; I loved this. This should be on your TBR if you like literary fiction.

I‘ve read Freshwater and You Made a Fool of Death with Your Beauty and this was way better, more fully developed, than the other two. I‘ll definitely be reading anything else they write!

#LGBTQBookBingo

Kenyazero I read this recently and couldn't decide how to describe it or how I felt about it (I usually avoid literary fiction because it's always stressful and sad), so I really enjoyed reading your review! 3mo
Kitta @Kenyazero thank you!! I like literary fiction a lot partly because it‘s a bit stressful and sad haha. It‘s probably what I read most. I sometimes feel reading should enrich my mind and be challenging, but that‘s kind of nonsense and I‘m trying to get into more light books and things I want to read instead of a challenge every time. I think I‘d read more if it was less hard, though I do enjoy the challenge. 2mo
Kenyazero @Kitta It sounds like you‘re finding a balance between reading for joy and reading for challenge. I hadn‘t really thought about it in those terms, but I guess I do pick out books that challenge me periodically as well. Thanks for that insight! 2mo
Kenyazero Also, looking at your book photo again I realized I have that same pillow! 2mo
Kitta @kenyazero Yes, that‘s a good way of putting it! Also I love that pillow! Glad I‘m not the only one who likes it haha. 2mo
21 likes1 stack add5 comments
blurb
Kitta
post image

Oh no my book! 😸😱

#catsoflitsy #littenkitten

Ruthiella 😹😹😹 6mo
Meshell1313 😂 too funny! 6mo
Soubhiville Delicious! 6mo
dabbe Snack time! 🖤🐾🖤 6mo
batsy Monch!! 😆 Great photo 😻 6mo
22 likes5 comments
blurb
Kitta
post image

Finally getting started on this one! #botm

review
SanjanaGhosh
post image
Pickpick

46th book of 2023!

review
Kazzie
Pickpick

Liked but may not recommend. The story was heartbreaking. The relationship and the character of the mother was strong. The cousin/lover was frustrating.

review
Kenyazero
post image
Pickpick

This wasn't a pick for me because I don't love literary fiction because it's usually dismal, depressing, and has horrible things happen for no reason. Of course, with that understanding of both this genre and Emezi's work, I went into this with appropriately low expectations of joy. It seems like an intriguing book and takes a hard look at struggles, especially for women. #LGBTQ #LiteraryFiction

25 likes1 stack add
review
Sharv_Sona
post image
Pickpick

I have mixed feelings on this book. Overall the plot and writing was top tier, but I thought there was an excessive amount of intimate scenes. It sort of ruined the moment, but as the book was coming to an end, the main focus of the book was Vivek, as they unraveled the truth, which in my opinion, was the best-written part of the book.

I praise Emezi for writing such a beautiful book with complex characters they captured perfectly. ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️.5/5

7 likes1 stack add
quote
Sharv_Sona
This post contains spoilers
show me
post image

quote
Sharv_Sona
This post contains spoilers
show me
post image

quote
Sharv_Sona
This post contains spoilers
show me
post image

quote
Sharv_Sona

Love and guilt sometimes taste the same.

quote
Sharv_Sona

“Who are we to decide what is impossible or not?”

quote
Sharv_Sona
post image

quote
Sharv_Sona

Some people can‘t see softness without wanting to hurt it.

quote
Sharv_Sona

Alone is a feeling you can get used to, and it‘s hard to believe in a better alternative.

quote
Sharv_Sona

Birth comes with blood.

quote
Sharv_Sona
post image

quote
Sharv_Sona
post image

Context: He‘s talking about a book called “The Beautyful Ones Are Not Yet Born”

quote
Sharv_Sona
post image

quote
Sharv_Sona

Children never really change, she thought, no matter how much they grow up.

quote
Sharv_Sona

Fresh starts were good; that separateness was where you could feel yourself, where you could learn who you were apart from everyone else.

quote
Sharv_Sona
post image

What an interesting way to start the book…

(It‘s technically not a spoiler as it‘s just the first line, right? 🙃)

blurb
Sharv_Sona
post image

I was just browsing through the library, until I saw this book. Obviously, one look at the title and the book was in my hands. Reading the synopsis only made it better. Next thing I know, I‘m borrowing this book which leads me here, finally starting it.

I hope that this book lives up to all that was said about it on Litsy, and I am very excited to start it!!

review
klu13
Pickpick

👍

review
paisleyjess
Pickpick

Absolutely devastating story that will give you lots to think about and discuss.

review
AnneCecilie
post image
Pickpick

I liked this one, but didn‘t love it as a lot of other seems to do.

Vivek Oji died the day the market burned down (not a spoiler, this is the first sentence). Then we get is life up to his death. We also follow his mum, cousin and friends after his death, in their grief and his mum‘s quest for answers.

blurb
AnneCecilie
post image

#FirstLineFridays

This is quite a first sentence

AllDebooks It really is! 1y
Cinfhen It‘s a great book!! Hope you enjoy 😀 1y
ShyBookOwl Yes, it is! 1y
AnneCecilie @Cinfhen Full disclosure, I was already finished reading when I posted. The first sentence was too good not to use for this. I liked the book, but didn‘t love it. There‘s also others of hers I‘ve enjoyed more than this. 1y
Cinfhen I didn‘t really love the other two I read from this author 🤷🏼‍♀️ 1y
56 likes5 comments
review
AbstractMonica
Pickpick

I was blown away by this book. I don‘t wanna give too much away, but this novel was not at all what I was expecting. The writing was beautiful & the story powerful.

blurb
AbstractMonica
post image

Next 😊

review
JacintaMCarter
post image
Pickpick

#2022Book79
Akwaeke Emezi is quickly becoming one of my favorite writers. If I thought I could teach this book without getting fired, I would do so immediately. The themes of grief, love, acceptance, and guilt are so masterfully woven throughout this story and I will definitely be rereading it several times.

blurb
ChaoticMissAdventures
post image

#pridebookrec
Q is for Queer
Queer author Akwaeke Emezi is a powerhouse of a writer. The books they published are all incredibly different, and always impeccably written.
Vivek Oji is my favorite of their novels so far.

sarahbarnes I have this one on my shelf - hope to get to it soon! 2y
ChaoticMissAdventures @sarahbarnes I hope you like it! This month I am trying to get to their 2y
26 likes1 stack add2 comments
review
mackelie
post image
Pickpick

We know that Vivek will die but not when or how until the very end. The story is weaved beautifully between present and past slowly discovering the true Vivek and his identity.

Really loved this story and felt like I was there with Vivek and his friends. Felt the sorrow of his family and friends. Felt the love he had. Felt a part of the Nigerwives community and glimpses of Igbo culture.

33 likes2 stack adds
blurb
Kimbono
post image

Another day, another book. The writing is really warm and beautiful but I‘m bracing myself for a full on crying session before the end.

23 likes2 stack adds
review
NovelNancyM
post image
Pickpick

A story where love transcends all and family isn't always the one we're born into.

review
Evita
Pickpick

5 out of 5!

review
Messiejessie
post image
Pickpick

Compelling but so sad. My favourite thing about this book was the descriptions of the love and friendship the characters feel for each other.

blurb
KatieDid927
post image

@riversong153 thank you so so much for such a beautiful #BlitsySwap package! I‘ve wanted to read the tagged book so badly for awhile now. The necklace is beautiful and I love Maya Angelou! The pencils and stickers are so fun. Everything is lovely, thanks again! 🤗 And special thanks to @Chelleo for hosting one of my favorite swaps!

riversong153 I‘m so glad you like it! 2y
Erinreadsthebooks One Armed Sister is SO good! 2y
Chelleo Those stickers!! 🤩🤩🤩 2y
54 likes3 comments
blurb
Traci1
post image

January Stats

Books finished: 21
⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐: Death of Vivek Oji and Firefly Carnival
⭐: Survive the Night

Owned books read: 14
New books brought into my house: 3
Books donated out: 22
Current physical tbr: 689 (slowly making a dent)

BookBelle84 I'm doing the same thing! Trying to get my owned tbr under control 2y
DivineDiana Fantastic job! I am trying to do the same thing. Your stats are a great idea to see progress! I just wish that my Book Clubs chose books I owned! (edited) 2y
rmaclean4 Agreed, your stats are a great way to keep yourself accountable. 2y
See All 6 Comments
Traci1 @BookBelle84 good luck! It's not easy. 2y
Traci1 @DivineDiana @rmaclean4 I figure I'm much more likely to stick with it if I can actually see numbers of how I'm doing. Just hoping I can keep up with it all year. 2y
rmaclean4 @Traci1 i counted mine and will be tracking them this year also. Thanks for the good idea! 2y
69 likes6 comments
review
Jolynne
post image
Pickpick

A story about living the person you are and want to be regardless the consequences.

11 likes1 stack add
review
MicheleinPhilly
post image
Pickpick

This was breathtakingly sad. Even knowing from the jump that the narrative surrounds a death does not prepare you for the heart-wrenching denouement. I would have loved to have spent more time in Vivek‘s head but he will most certainly stay in mine for a long time to come.

Cortg I went into this knowing nothing about it and it became one of my all time faves! Heart-wrenching, for sure! 2y
Suet624 I have this on my shelf. Keep postponing reading it. This author blew me away with her first book. 2y
Megabooks Yes. This exactly. 2y
77 likes3 stack adds3 comments
review
Traci1
post image
Pickpick

Holy crow, I haven't cried so hard in a while. Nothing about this story surprised me - I had a feeling from the first page where it would go. And yet. I was gutted by the ending. The ending that again didn't surprise me except for the depth of feelings that I experienced from the last few pages. And now, my eyes are red, and my nose is sniffy, and Henry (6) is telling me that "you shouldn't read sad books, mommy."
⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐

charl08 Aw, what a cute comment. 😍 2y
Megabooks 💯 agree 2y
Cortg I loved this book! 2y
Soubhiville I loved this one too! 2y
78 likes1 stack add5 comments
review
Afua
post image
Pickpick

I don‘t yet have the words to honour this book. I doubt I will for a long time.

All my words are caught in my chest and throat and only Akwaeke could write us into existence this way....

I am a crying open wound after this book. My God what beauty....what light...what gut wrenching truth my God....my God...

Suet624 This author…💕💕💕 2y
Afua They are everything. Everything. @Suet624 2y
Nute Your words are beautiful, Caren!💕 2y
Afua Thank you! 🥺😭🧡 @Nute 2y
7 likes4 comments
blurb
GatheringBooks
post image

#Haunted Day 31: The haunting and mysterious vibe of this narrative is perfect for #Halloween. Paired with crispy calamari and eggplant casserole.

Alwaysbeenaloverofbooks Looks delicious 😋 2y
Eggs Great photo🤎💛🤎 2y
48 likes2 comments
blurb
GatheringBooks
post image

#Haunted Day 22: Perhaps there is #Undead here? Hehe. Paired with authentic Turkish delight and french press coffee - perfect for our long weekend.

Eggs 🙌🏻📚❤️ 2y
49 likes1 comment
blurb
Well-ReadNeck
post image
review
Sydneypaige
post image
Pickpick

I would read any book of Emezi‘s after the first book of theirs I read, Freshwater. Couldn‘t believe it took me almost a full year after release to read this one. They did it again, creating beautiful relationships and addicting lyrical prose.

blurb
Traci1
post image

Both of my blue boxes arrived today. And I got my BFF tote. My husband gave our mailman a tip earlier this week because of "all the boxes of books you have to bring to my wife." ?

#botm

ICantImReading Haha now that‘s a good husband!! 😁 2y
Jemgirl2014 Congrats on getting your BFF status! Enjoy your books! 2y
Traci1 @ICantImReading he is a great enabler of my obsession. 😊 2y
Traci1 @Jemgirl2014 thanks! 2y
81 likes4 comments
blurb
cariashley
post image

Not a fan of this month‘s books, but it‘s my birthday month so had to pick something. Sort of interested in Vivek Oji and the Rooney is obvious; wish it had been a main pick. #BOTM has been very meh for months now.

Kimberlone I think this has been the general Litsy sentiment today. I skipped, but will definitely get the Sally Rooney in November when I have my birthday gift. 2y
mrsthilkey Agreed. I skipped but will definitely be adding the Rooney next time they have a pick that I want. 2y
jeannasser Wait are you Virgo as well ?? 👀👀 or Libra 😊😊 2y
See All 9 Comments
cariashley @Kimberlone @mrsthilkey at least the Rooney is an add on! Looking forward to that. 2y
cariashley @ReadingWithJean Virgo here too!! My birthday is tomorrow 😊 2y
ErikasMindfulShelf The Death of Vivek Oji was great. Can‘t wait to read Rooney‘s new book. 2y
cariashley @ErikasMindfulShelf good to hear, it had fallen off my radar for some reason but the reviews are all pretty positive! 2y
jeannasser @cariashley omg! Happy birthday!!! 🥰🥰 2y
cariashley @jeannasser thank you!!! ☺️ 2y
45 likes9 comments