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The Night Masquerade by Nnedi Okorafor Review

Title: The Night Masquerade

Author: Nnedi Okorafor

First published January 16, 2018

208 pages, Paperback

ISBN: 9780765393135 (ISBN10: 0765393131)

Rating: 4.02


The powerful Conclave of Shadows has triumphed over the evil plans of the Nighthawks, saving the Great Empire of Kesh from destruction. However, their victory is short-lived as the insane sorcerer Leso Varen takes refuge on the distant planet of Kelewan, plotting his revenge.

The savage Dasati warriors, with their ferocious strength and deadly weapons, gather in great numbers, ready to launch an invasion. Sorcerer Pug, along with his trusted companions Magnus, Nokor, and the enigmatic Bek, embark on a perilous journey into the heart of the Dasati Empire, seeking a solution to this impending threat.

Their mission is fraught with danger and uncertainty, as they grapple with their own inner demons and confront their deepest fears. Will they be able to save the Empire once again, or will they succumb to the darkness that lurks within?

About the Author

Nnedi Okorafor is a talented writer who has achieved the impressive feat of becoming a New York Times Bestselling author. Her writing style is primarily focused on the genres of science fiction and fantasy, which she writes for both children and adults.

Nnedi has invented and defined terms like africanfuturism and africanjujuism to describe the specific themes and concepts that she explores in her work. She was born in the United States to Nigerian parents of Igbo descent, and has been visiting family in Nigeria since she was a child.

Her Nigerian heritage and experiences growing up have been the biggest influence on her writing. Nnedi has written many books, including Who Fears Death, which won the World Fantasy Award and is being adapted into an HBO TV series.

She has also won several other awards for her work, including the Nebula and Hugo awards for her novella trilogy Binti. Her Nsibidi Scripts Series has also won the Lodestar and Locus awards.

Nnedi’s graphic novel LaGuardia has won both a Hugo and Eisner award. Her most recent novella, Remote Control, has been very well-received by readers and critics alike.

Nnedi’s debut novel Zahrah the Windseeker won the prestigious Wole Soyinka Prize for Literature. She currently lives in Phoenix, Arizona with her daughter Anyaugo.

To learn more about Nnedi and her work, visit her website Nnedi.com or follow her on social media at @Nnedi on Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram.

Editoral Review

The Night Masquerade by Nnedi Okorafor is a captivating addition to the genre of science fiction and fantasy. Okorafor, an award-winning Nigerian-American author, brings her unique perspective and talent to create a vivid and imaginative story that explores themes of identity, power, and cultural heritage.

The novel is set in an African city-state called Wakanda, which is isolated from the outside world and home to a technologically advanced society. The story follows the fearless and powerful protagonist, Sisi, as she uncovers a plot against Wakanda’s government during a night of festivities and masquerades.

As Sisi navigates through the dangerous political landscape and confronts her own personal demons, she must learn to harness her own abilities and beliefs in order to save her people. Okorafor’s writing is both beautiful and evocative, transporting the reader to the vibrant and colorful world of Wakanda.

She weaves together elements of African culture and folklore with science fiction, resulting in a thought-provoking and mesmerizing read. Okorafor’s skillful character development, particularly with the fierce and multifaceted Sisi, makes the story even more compelling.

While the novel can stand alone, readers who are familiar with Okorafor’s previous works, particularly the first two books in the Binti series, will recognize some recurring themes and ideas. Moreover, The Night Masquerade is especially relevant in today’s society, as it touches upon issues of racism, ethnocentrism, and cultural appropriation.

However, the book is not without its faults. The pacing can be slow at times, which may feel antithetical to the action-packed premise of the story.

Additionally, while Okorafor’s rich descriptions of the setting and culture are immersive and enchanting, they may be overwhelming for readers unfamiliar with African culture or science fiction. In conclusion, The Night Masquerade is a must-read for fans of science fiction, fantasy, and African literature.

Okorafor’s impressive world-building, dynamic characters, and poignant themes make it an engaging and thought-provoking experience. However, its slow pacing and occasional overwhelming details may not be for everyone.

As such, it is recommended for readers who value diversity, originality, and powerful storytelling. On a scale of 1 to 10, this book rates an 8.5.