Author: Nadia Owusu
Publisher: Simon Schuster
Released: January 12, 2021
Received: Own (BOTM)
Aftershocks is the debut novel of Nadia Owusu, and it is a compelling and fascinating memoir. If you’re going to choose one memoir to read this year (that’s probably going to be the case for me), let it be this one!
Nadia Owusu struggles with and explores the concept of identity here as she delves into the trauma and history of her past. Abandoned by her mother when she was only two years old, Nadia has struggled with her identity.
Her story reads as a coming-of-age tale, but with the reality of a memoir. It’s beautiful and heartbreaking all in one and is absolutely worth reading.
“No story, no metaphor, is innocent of theft, omission, obscuration, or violence.”
Aftershocks is such a profound memoir. It’s almost hard to believe this is a debut novel, as Nadia Owusu deals with incredibly complex subjects and concerns. It’s so wonderfully human, showcasing all of the good and bad that people have to offer.
I love that before the book even started, Nadia Owusu made a point of warning the reader that this was not going to be a linear read. Her story unfolded in a way that felt organic while not actually being chronologically accurate. It was fascinating and not something I’ve seen before (then again, I don’t read many memoirs, so maybe it is common? I don’t know).
“Without other humans there is no such thing as shame.”
The comparison to an earthquake and its aftershocks is both evocative and accurate. We hardly ever think of emotional events represented through physical means, yet in so many ways, it is true. It’s comparisons such as these that really hit home in Owusu’s writing.