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Things Fall Apart

Average Rating 3.5
( 437 )
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5 Star

(148)

4 Star

(130)

3 Star

(75)

2 Star

(44)

1 Star

(40)

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Most Helpful Favorable Review

14 out of 16 people found this review helpful.

A Classic Tale.

Things Fall Apart is incredible. Not only is it a story of the encroaching British civilization and how the villagers adapt or do not adapt to the changing ways, Things Fall Apart is about the inner workings of a family. Father and son are very different and very simila...
Things Fall Apart is incredible. Not only is it a story of the encroaching British civilization and how the villagers adapt or do not adapt to the changing ways, Things Fall Apart is about the inner workings of a family. Father and son are very different and very similair at the same time. The father is old school while the son embraces the new way. What is intriguing is the society that is portrayed; a society that is male dominant. However the priestess is not to be disobeyed. Things Fall Apart would make a good reading for students.

posted by Wordzmind on May 20, 2009

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Most Helpful Critical Review

9 out of 24 people found this review helpful.

Story or Documentary?

This book had no plot. Most of the first part had absolutely no relevance to what little storyline there was. The thin plot that finally developed ended up being rushed at the end. The entire thing with the spirits was confusing for me - were they real, or is Okonkwo ju...
This book had no plot. Most of the first part had absolutely no relevance to what little storyline there was. The thin plot that finally developed ended up being rushed at the end. The entire thing with the spirits was confusing for me - were they real, or is Okonkwo just crazy? Personally, I hated Okonkwo simply because his story was so boring. I couldn't really care less what happened to him - I was never able to connect with him. I think this story would have done better as a documentary or encyclopedia entry, because that is basically what it is, and it is a plague to high school students everywhere.

posted by Anonymous on December 12, 2007

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  • Posted May 20, 2009

    more from this reviewer

    I Also Recommend:

    A Classic Tale.

    Things Fall Apart is incredible. Not only is it a story of the encroaching British civilization and how the villagers adapt or do not adapt to the changing ways, Things Fall Apart is about the inner workings of a family. Father and son are very different and very similair at the same time. The father is old school while the son embraces the new way. What is intriguing is the society that is portrayed; a society that is male dominant. However the priestess is not to be disobeyed. Things Fall Apart would make a good reading for students.

    14 out of 16 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted December 12, 2007

    Story or Documentary?

    This book had no plot. Most of the first part had absolutely no relevance to what little storyline there was. The thin plot that finally developed ended up being rushed at the end. The entire thing with the spirits was confusing for me - were they real, or is Okonkwo just crazy? Personally, I hated Okonkwo simply because his story was so boring. I couldn't really care less what happened to him - I was never able to connect with him. I think this story would have done better as a documentary or encyclopedia entry, because that is basically what it is, and it is a plague to high school students everywhere.

    9 out of 24 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted January 3, 2005

    An awful apologetic for a savage culture

    This is a story that still believes that the idea of the 'noble savage' is correct. Okonkwo is a sexist angry man who is so hung up on his savage 'traditions.' The missionaries who come are not much better, with their misguided religion. All in all, a very depressing read that tries to make the reader feel sorry for Okonkwo. Instead, you end up hating him. And they give this to high school students.

    5 out of 17 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted February 5, 2012

    school reading

    A very uneventful book. My IB advanced Language Arts class was forced to read it during the summer. I am an avid reader and can read a book in a day if I like it. Needless to say it took me a whole three months to finish it and even then I skipped around and read Sparknotes for some of it. I felt like I had to read the same sentence three or four times because my eyes kept getting out of focus and my mind would drift.

    4 out of 12 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted June 24, 2010

    Really Very Good

    This was a very good book about changes and about the clashes of cultures. It was well written, had a very good plot, and I think that Okonkwo's character led to his responses to all the things that happened in his life, things he could not change if he wanted to, almost like he was cornered and lashing out to preserve whatever values he had towards his culture and family. Also, I had to re-read a couple pages to get who was who, but foreign names is really a shallow factor in deciding whether or not a book is worth reading. If you start a book with that kind of mentality, no wonder you can't get the point, you don't really even want to understand it even a little. That's the entire point of the references in the back, to help you understand what is going on. If you are willing to reread some parts, learn quite a bit about previous cultures, and be open to deeper meanings, this classic book is recommended for you.

    4 out of 6 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted September 8, 2011

    A decent book.

    Things Fall Apart is a fine book in all of its aspects, it follows the story of Okonkwo and how he thinks he must, ironically, prove how strong he is by showing that he does not care. It certainly does a nice job of connecting you to the character, you actually care about what the protagonist is doing, but I just could not find any way that this could connect to my own life and that is what I believe this book was trying to accomplish. If the objective wasn't to have you relate to the main character than it was to show how religious differences can cause conflict. The story follows Okonkwo as he seems to go through a life that wants to make him as miserable as possible. One of the cruelest jokes in my opinion was when Okonkwo was finally beginning to care for someone they are tragically killed and Okonkwo has to witness and take part in his death. This is the point where I start to feel distanced from the main character. Of course you can try to connect to the villagers in the area that Okonkwo is in, but I could not do that either as I found no relevance to my life and the tribal groups. What I do like is that the author actually cares about the side characters and everyone has their own unique personality and character trait, making them actually seem like they are real. I also like the way that the author presents the story, the story has a nice pacing to it and does not seem like it is just filler and is slogging to the end, but the story does not also seem like it has to cram as much energy and action as it possibly could. That is the kind of format I like my books to be in. What I dislike is why the author felt the need that the reader should have reasons to dislike the main character (because the author could not seriously expect us to connect to a man like Okonkwo). The major message of this story seems to be not to blindly follow what "the rest of the guys" are doing. The author seems to stress this by having Okonkwo have something horrible happen to him every time he listens to his clan. This book certainly does have appeal but the book is just not for me. I would still recommend the book to others however because it seems that people either love the book to death or believe that the book was nothing special.

    3 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted September 14, 2010

    Things Fall Apart themes, summary, and review...

    Things Fall Apart was a great novel to read. This book is about major changes not only happening to one man and his life, but also the village that he lives in. The main character, Okonkwo, is a very determined man that tries to basically do the opposite of his father, which includes being masculine in everything he does and trying to make his son do the same. His father was a scared, lazy man in the village who did virtually nothing productive for himself, his family, or the village. In Things Fall Apart, there is African culture on the verge of change after some newcomers arrive in the village. This book raises the question of whether to accept the new changes or stick to the same old tradition in African culture. Likes/Dislikes - I liked the ironic situations in the book that mixed things up and suprised me a bit. - I disliked that the story did not have a real plot to read about. I feel like it was more of a documentary of African culture. I do recommend this novel to read. This is not only a great way to learn about some of African culture, it is overall a great book to read with ironic situations occuring throughout the book.

    3 out of 5 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted April 14, 2010

    more from this reviewer

    Required Reading

    I ordered this book as required reading for a class I am teaching. The basic story line is easy to understand, but the themes are excellent for discussing in a Senior High School Level class.

    3 out of 4 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted December 28, 2011

    Great novel

    Amazing story that makes you rethink your stances on religious issues

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted July 12, 2011

    Booooooooooooo

    Hate it

    2 out of 7 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted June 20, 2011

    Why things falls apart is so good

    The book was good. i did not think that i would like it. Only reason i might have thought that was because i had to read it for school. So it was kind of forced on me but then i realy got into the book i wanted to se what happens to him and i really started to like reading about their native ways. And that is what i think made the book so good was that it had someting that a lot of books that i read do not have and that is why i think this book is a good book.

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted December 26, 2010

    boring

    read it for school. totally hated it

    2 out of 6 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted March 16, 2014

    Things Fall Apart is a relatively uneventful story consisting of

    Things Fall Apart is a relatively uneventful story consisting of unlikable and unrelatable characters. I had to read this over the summer before sophomore year, and getting through the first 50 pages was like torture. Not to spoil anything, but the ending totally sucks. 




    1 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted June 17, 2012

    Jess

    Hi! Im jess

    1 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted January 15, 2012

    Great story, well told

    This is a great story, and is told masterfully by a very skilled storyteller. He does a great job of taking us into the corrupt world of Nigeria, helping to shed a light on why things are the way they are. Love this book.

    1 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted July 25, 2011

    Very poorly written

    Very choppy. Grammatical errors. No story line whatsoever. Boring. Written in circles. Not in chronological order. Very confusing. Full of insignificant details. Characters are poorly developed. The only reason I finished it is because it is my summer reading and I hated it with a fiery passion.

    1 out of 5 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted April 18, 2011

    Amazing!!!

    changes the way you look at certain things in life!! favorite book ever!!!

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted November 10, 2010

    I Also Recommend:

    An Informative and Interesting Book

    An interesting reflection on the culture and life of the people of Nigerian through the prism of this work of fiction. Though not always an easy read, it is informative and most worthy of read because ultimately it helps us to understand another people and their life.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted November 1, 2010

    Not The Best - But Interesting

    'Things Fall Apart' was unlike any book I have ever read. The plot, country, and characters were totally original, at least comparing those from previous reads. The setting of the book is in Nigeria and from what I understood, the time frame was around the slave trade period. Chinua Achebe has a vivid imagination and has a gift for transitioning what is in his head into document and making it seem realistic. I found interest in reading this book from my grandma and mother. Plus, my mom was making me read the required books to have been read for a city nearby, this just so happened to be on the list. In a way, I was forced to read it, but at the same time I was looking for new genres of novels and unique book selections.
    The novel starts out with the history of a tribal man and how he was doomed for failure through his personal chi -or god-. The man's name was Onkonwo and his father was considered a woman. This was because he had gained no title in life and therefore had not 'become a man'. Unoka, in fact, was a coward and a loafer. He was a poor man leaving his wife and children hardly enough to eat. People mocked him and swore they would not dare lend him any more money. However, Unoka always succeeded in borrowing more, along with piling up his debts. Unoka died, before he could pay back any of his debts and leaving Onkonkwo to feed his family. On the other hand, Onkonkwo had already accomplished more than his father when Unoka died. He was known for his wrestling skills and was gaining the trust from neighbors to spare him two barns worth of seed yams. In his life, Onkonkwo gained the privilage of having 3 wives and 2 out of 4 titles. Sadly, at the end of Part One Onkonkwo was forced to leave his clan and travel to the land of Mbanta, where the kinsmen of his mother lived. This leads to his new life and the beginning of Part Two of the book. I do believe that it's unique how 'Things Fall Apart' is split into two intertwining stories telling about Onkonkwo's troubles and trials he has to face. The first describes the clash between individual and society gains. The other describes the conflict between tribes and how European missionaries destroy Onkonkwo's tribal world from the inside out.
    I believe that this book gets slow at many parts. My reasoning simply is: Achebe describes certain parts too much and then whips back to the plot, not describing the parts that spark some interest. The plot is all over and used terms that are foreign and at times un able to comprehend. I have heard many times that it is hard to follow and readers stop reading. Over all, I think this book was an okay read if you have nothing else to read and you like novels with cultural themes.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 10, 2010

    Not Recommended

    Book is very slow, and somewhat hard to understand. Names can get very confusing and there is too much detail

    1 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

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