Tuesday, October 27, 2020

Book Review: "Ties That Tether" by Jane Igharo

Does love always have to require sacrifices and hard choices? Jane Igharo analyzes that question in her great debut novel, Ties That Tether.

When Azere was 12, her father died, and she moved with her mother and sister from Nigeria to Canada. Just before he died, she promised her father she’d marry a Nigerian man and preserve their culture.

Since then, she’s been dutiful about keeping that promise, even as her mother becomes more domineering and essentially forces her to go on dates with eligible men. And after one such date ends badly, she goes to nurse her wounds at a hotel bar, and winds up meeting Rafael, who is handsome, intelligent, sexy...and not Nigerian.

After their passionate one-night stand, she never plans to see him again, but fate has other ideas. Neither can get the other out of their mind. But when complications ensue, Azere must decide which is more important—following her heart or obeying her mother and keeping a promise she made when she was too young to know better.

This was a really good story, with rom-com elements and a tiny bit of steam, but it’s also a powerful exploration of the issues faced by those in biracial or bicultural relationships. There’s also a healthy dose of drama and family dysfunction, which I’m always there for.

I definitely enjoyed this one, and was hooked from start to finish. I'll admit I found one or two of the characters irritating but I'm sure that their behavior was realistic to situations like these. (And by the way, how gorgeous is the cover of this book?)

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