Binti - Nnedi Okorafor

Binti is a 16 year old girl from Africa, who is leaving her tribe to study at Oomza Uni, a university in space. On her way to the university, her spaceship gets attacked by another alien species and things will never be the same again for Binti.


It took me about an hour to read Binti and a lot of things are happening on those few pages. It is a rather action packed story, but unfortunately it is a story with a morally questionable message. Since it´s almost impossible not to spoil the story, I will continue under a spoiler tag. So if you plan to read this novella, stay away from it.



Binti is on the ship with a whole lot of other young people, who are heading to the university. One fine day, the aliens attack and everyone except for Binti (and the pilot ... duh, someone has to fly the ship) are brutally killed. Binti is able to communicate with the aliens and learns that a (holy) body part of the alien king has been stolen by employes of the university. Binti does the only reasonable thing: she negotiates between the university and the aliens, the alien king gets a deeply felt apology and his body part back, one of the aliens, who just has been on a killing spree, is allowed to  enroll at the university and everyone is just super happy.


Yeah ... so I have some issues with this. Apparently it is totally okay to kill hundreds of people, as long as people (and aliens) talk with each other and come to an understanding with each other. No ramifications and consequences for a bunch of mass murdering aliens. I get what the author is trying to convey with her story. That cultural or religious differences can be overcome by communicating with each other. But the whole execution of the idea makes me feel iffy.

(show spoiler)


I didn´t like this novel, but now I´ve got a book for the ugly cover in the summer book bingo. I just want to give that woman a bar of soap.