Review:: Binti by Nnedi Okorafor

Her name is Binti, and she is the first of the Himba people ever to be offered a place at Oomza University, the finest institution of higher learning in the galaxy. But to accept the offer will mean giving up her place in her family to travel between the stars among strangers who do not share her ways or respect her customs.
Knowledge comes at a cost, one that Binti is willing to pay, but her journey will not be easy. The world she seeks to enter has long warred with the Meduse, an alien race that has become the stuff of nightmares. Oomza University has wronged the Meduse, and Binti’s stellar travel will bring her within their deadly reach.
If Binti hopes to survive the legacy of a war not of her making, she will need both the gifts of her people and the wisdom enshrined within the University, itself – but first she has to make it there, alive. (via Goodreads)

I picked Binti up on Audible as a Daily Deal last year, for like $1.95, and I regretted nothing. I loved this novella from start to finish, and I can see why it won two huge awards – the 2016 Hugo for Best Novella, the 2015 Nebula for Best Novella.

I love space travel stories, having grown up on Star Trek and Firefly, so imagine my joy at seeing this book written by a Nigerian-American woman, honoring Namibian culture with Binti’s love for her people.

This novella was accessible, yet stunningly beautiful. Binti’s voice was so brilliantly human, and her world was so not. The ships were actually living creatures who allowed others to ride in them, their technology was brilliant and never over-explained. I loved that Binti was able to bring her culture with her, and recreate some of her traditions in a slightly different way. In fact, it was her love for her culture that helped her make it through this novel.

At the end of the novella, I found myself wanting more – only to find out that the next book wouldn’t come out until 2017! I had to satisfy my desire for more work by reading several of Okoragor’s other works, which I also loved.

Luckily for you, Binti: Home, the second of three novellas in this series, comes out tomorrow! I know I’ll be buying it, because I can’t wait to find out what happens next in Binti’s life, and how she’s received when she returns home. I’m hoping that Binti: Home will be another audiobook, but these books both already have a place on my shelf! It’s a five star read for me!

Five stars

You can pick up a copy of Binti on Amazon in paperback, digital or audiobook, on Indiebound in paperback, or at your favorite bookseller in paper. You can get Binti: Home on Amazon, Indiebound, or your other favorite booksellers!

~ Nnedi Okorafor is an international award-winning novelist of African-based science fiction, fantasy and magical realism for both children and adults.
Born in the United States to two Nigerian immigrant parents, Nnedi is known for weaving African culture into creative evocative settings and memorable characters. In a profile of Nnedi’s work titled, “Weapons of Mass Creation”, The New York Times called Nnedi’s imagination “stunning”.
Nnedi Okorafor’s books include Lagoon (a British Science Fiction Association Award finalist for Best Novel), Who Fears Death (a World Fantasy Award winner for Best Novel), Kabu Kabu (A Publisher’s Weekly Best Book for Fall 2013), Akata Witch (an Best Book of the Year), Zahrah the Windseeker (winner of the Wole Soyinka Prize for African Literature), and The Shadow Speaker (a CBS Parallax Award winner). Her latest works include her novel The Book of Phoenix and her novella Binti (a finalist for a Nebula and British Science Fiction Award).
Nnedi is an associate professor at the University at Buffalo, New York (SUNY). Learn more at

Disclaimer: All links to Indiebound and Amazon are affiliate links, which means that if you buy through those links, I will make a small amount of money off of it.

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