Binti, Nnedi Okorafor: Book Review

A young woman named Binti is the first member of the Himba ethnic group on Earth (closely modeled on the Himba people)[4] to be accepted into the prestigious intergalactic university, Oomza Uni. Upon being notified of her acceptance, Binti runs away from home and boards a transport ship to Oomza Uni. While in transit, the ship is hijacked by the Meduse, a jellyfish-like alien species that have previously been at war with the Khoush, another human ethnic group. After the Meduse murder all other inhabitants of the ship, Binti retreats into her private living quarters. She subsequently discovers that a piece of ancient technology she had brought with her from Earth, referred to as her edan, enables direct communication with the Meduse, and that her otjize, a type of mixed clay made from the soil of her homeland, has healing properties when applied to the tentacles of the Meduse. She makes a friend in one of the younger, more hot-headed Meduse, named Okwu, and subsequently brokers a tentative truce between herself and the hijackers. Upon arrival at the University, she is able to negotiate a lasting peace between the Meduse and the human race, after which she begins her studies at Oomza Uni in earnest. – wikipedia.org

First of all, i am a student of web development and web designing since 2019, which was inspired by Binti. I read this book in 2018 which is the first science fiction book I’ve ever read in my life. It is also the first eBook I’ve read and completed in less than a week. Ninety pages of a thousand lives and a million occurrences. In Arabic and Swahili binti means a daughter or a girl. According to Nnedi Okorafor Binti is an ordinary girl, a rebel of her people and a genius. She is a lady who believes in herself and powers. She never leaves anything for anything better, she never compares or take sides, she decides to take risks and try all. She is so passionate about education and that is what motivated me. She is the first of her people to be accepted to a prestigious family an actually go. The fact that she came from a very introverted tribe, her tribe was her land. Nobody ever left the place and if anyone tried to, the tribe would automatically disown her. According go me, she is a challenge and in 2019 i take the challenge. I am ready to take all challenges for a better future. I put myself in the shoes and i fit. My father calls me Binti.

Nnedi Okorafor made me learn more about the Himba tribe in Namibia. She showed us how scared Binti is, to go into a new world against everyone’s will. Then she introduces us to the otjize a red orange-is mixture of butterfat and ochre pigment used by the Himba people to protect themselves from the harsh desert climate. According to Wikipedia, the mixture lends the skin a deep orange or reddish tinge. This symbolizes earth’s rich red color, and blood, the essence of life,(which Binti used as a protection against her people’s wrath and outside enemies) and is the Himba ideal of beauty. The Himba use otjize in their hair as well, which is long and plaited into intricate designs. Binti believed that her hair was plaited into mathematical code which no one who did not belong to the Himba could understand. With the otjize, Binti believed she has her land walking with in her skin and hair. The more it fade the more the tribe moved away from her heart. She couldn’t wash her before getting to the destination, Oomza University which was a very long journey.
On her way to Oomza University, the Meduse, a type of alien in a long war against the Khoush, attack the ship at dinnertime and kill all the students except Binti. She’s not exactly sure why, but it seems to have something to do with a mysterious artifact she found in the desert that she keeps as a good-luck charm. Binti hid in her room, with fear it would only be a matter of time until the Meduse kill her; she knew she wasn’t Khoush, but as a human on a Khoush ship, that was enough. What seemed like the beginning of an exciting new life now was going to end just days after her departure.

Binti is a strong lady who made peace through wisdom and patience.

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