Things Fall Apart

People, Identity & Culture
Chinua Achebe
Age Group:
14 and up
People, Identity & Culture

Two intertwining stories center on the rise and fall of Okankwo, a “strong man” of an Ibo village in Nigeria. Okankwo worked his whole life to overcome his father’s weakness and has achieved great prosperity and respect among those in his village. Okankwo, however, rules his household with a heavy hand and his wives and children fear his fiery temper. Okankwo’s sense of manliness is more akin to that of his warrior ancestors than to that of his fellow clansmen who have converted to Christianity and are appeasing the British administrators who infiltrate their village. Okankwo’s fear of being perceived as weak, a fear that initially helps him achieve great power, is the same fear that ultimately leads to his fall.

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Ivy Aberdeen’s Letter to the World

Ashley Herring Blake

When a tornado rips through town, Ivy Aberdeen's house is destroyed and her family displaced. Ivy feels invisible and ignored in the aftermath of the storm—and what's worse, her notebook filled with secret drawings of girls holding hands has gone missing.

Ivy Aberdeens Letter to the World Book Cover