By Chris Abani
"The second you input those pages, you step right into a appealing and terrifying dream. you're within the palms of a grasp, a literary shaman. Abani casts his spell so completely—so devastatingly—you emerge cleansed, redeemed, and completely haunted."—Brad Kessler, writer of Birds in Fall
Part Inferno, half Paradise Lost, and half Sunjiata epic, Song for Night is the tale of a West African boy soldier’s lyrical, terrifying, but attractive trip throughout the nightmare panorama of a brutal conflict looking for his misplaced platoon. The reader is led by way of the unvoiced protagonist who, as a part of a land mine-clearing platoon, had his vocal chords minimize, a circulate to maintain those little ones from screaming while blown up, and thereby distracting the opposite minesweepers. The e-book is written in a ghostly voice, with every one bankruptcy headed via a line of the original signal language those youngsters invented. This ebook is in contrast to anything ever written approximately an African war.
Chris Abani is a Nigerian poet and novelist and the writer of The Virgin of Flames, Becoming Abigail (a New York Times Editor’s Choice), and GraceLand (a number of the Today Show e-book membership and winner of the 2005 PEN/Hemingway Prize and the Hurston/Wright Legacy Award). His different prizes contain a PEN Freedom to write down Award, a Prince Claus Award, and a Lannan Literary Fellowship. He lives and teaches in California.
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Extra info for Song for Night: A Novella
I've been in a pack with the opposite mine diffusers. Even then, all of us trusted Ijeoma to lead us. She continually knew the appropriate factor to do, and the suitable time to do it. God is familiar with I leave out her, love her. enjoyed her. yet I can’t take into consideration that now. i have to circulate. i look round me and sift my reminiscence for ideas, consultant issues. i glance up, pondering possibly the celebs will consultant me, yet there are rarely any and i've forgotten the names of the constellations and their relationships besides. the single factor i will take into account is the word, stick with the massive consuming gourd domestic. i attempt to make out the massive dip of its form, yet clouds and treetops are occluding every little thing. Honing my worry to an side, I step off, sinking into the depths of the woodland. I pause to mild a cigarette, attempting to make out the wooded area within the loss of life gentle: fits are too few and worthy to be wasted completely for attempting to see. I suck at the filter out, singeing the top right into a crimson glow. within the distance I listen a nocturnal wooden dove. I press on, crashing in the course of the wooded area with the finesse of a buffalo. insects chew, sharp spear grass rip at my pores and skin. It ultimately provides method to wetlands, the start of a swamp. The blood from my cuts draws leechlike creatures that suck on my palms and toes as I splash deeper via what seems to be a mangrove swamp. i have to have traveled in a curve, following the wooded area again to the place the river minimize via it. i have to have simply because that’s the one approach i will be trudging via a mangrove swamp. it isn't enjoyable yet we handed a mangrove swamp at the approach in the day before today, so i need to be taking flight the fitting approach. Into secure territory. I hate mangroves although. The bushes skate the water on roots like hands, so human and but so hauntingly bewitched they terrify me. The water degrees aren’t uniform. occasionally merely ankle deep, occasionally thigh deep, occasionally the floor sheers away underneath my ft submerging me gasping within the chocolate thick brown water. Exhausted, i locate a tree with a number of low-hanging branches and climb, excessive as i will, till the swamp and river less than are not any greater than a black shimmer within the evening. construction a nest of branches, anything we realized from the monkeys, I tie myself conscientiously to the thickest one. we'd have realized a few methods from the monkeys, yet we aren’t monkeys. Sleep is a two-by-four catching me instantly among the eyes and knocking me squarely into oblivion. relaxation even though is one other topic. I haven’t rested considering that that evening. there was exhaustion; sleep even. yet now not relaxation. now not for the reason that my unit stumbled right into a small village, or what was once left of it, numerous huts falling aside on the fringe of a bomb-pitted strip of tar. We observed a gaggle of ladies sitting round a low hearth, huddled like several fairy-tale witch we were weaned on. Armed to enamel with AK-47s and luggage of ammo and grenades, in most cases stolen from the higher U. S. –armed enemy infantrymen we had killed, yet nonetheless donning rags, we stood shut jointly, looking at the ladies, uncertain what to do; or no matter if to method. the ladies have been consuming and the odor of roasting meat drove us on.