Written By Akwaeke Emezi
First, let’s talk about the title. You probably had to read it a few times, then take a step back with a “whoa” coming out of your mouth with your brain turning over. Me too.
Second, this book will leave you a sweaty mess, but in a good way.
I spent most of the summer reading thrillers, a few young adult fantasy but I couldn’t stomach the too-cheesy romance titles blowing up all over #bookstagram and Amazon best seller lists. I knew I needed something beyond revenge and murder, but I needed it to be meaty – to be juicy and it to be something I could talk to other people about. Along came #badonpaper’s August pick – You Made a Fool of Death With Your Beauty by Akwaeke Emezi.
This book moves like a roller coaster. You know when you’re sitting and waiting for it to go. The anticipation builds. There’s fast curves, sudden drops and slow periods – where you’re waiting for what’s next. That’s like the book. Some parts – I had to re-read because I flipped too fast, all hot and bothered. Others were description heavy and I knew it was a build up, but I was impatient for what was next. But when you get to the end, I believe the reader will be satisfied.
This book is about a young woman named Feyi, who is trying to move on from a traumatic event in her life. Her honest account of not looking for love, just looking for something in the moment – and it stirring up emotions she isn’t sure she’s ready for – will connect with many readers. The writing is real, both language and situations. Many times when Feyi’s best friend, Joy, is in the scene, I thought that was exactly what my friends would say to me – to go for it or what the heck are you doing?! Feyi is also an artist, using her art as an outlet for that said trauma. This opens her to a circle of secondary characters like high-profile gallery owners and celebrity-types that help beef up the story.
I also said “juicy.” Imagine being stuck in a love triangle between two beautiful people – that are related. To be clear – and it’s written right in the cover – a beautiful man and his even more beautiful father. Yes, I said father. (This book might have you increasing the age limits on your Tinder account.) Imagine descriptions of a tropical island in the Caribbean complete with multiple villas. For any “Bear” or “Top Chef” lovers, the book includes multiple scenes of a chef and food basically dripping off the page.
This is a book where you’ll shout at the page, cry with the characters, be completely intrigued, occasionally disgusted and flipping through until the very last page. I think many of you will have strong opinions on the book – especially Feyi’s decisions, so please let us know what you think via the comments on @caughtinsouthie or catch me at @glossinbosssinbooks / @josiegl on Instagram.
If you finish this one quick and need some more love in your life, check out these two great reads below.
- The Love of My Life by Rosie Walsh
- Mustique Island by Sarah McCoy