Excerpt from A Bit of Difference by Sefi Atta, plus links to reviews, author biography & more

Summary |  Excerpt |  Reviews |  Beyond the Book |  Readalikes |  Genres & Themes |  Author Bio

A Bit of Difference

By Sefi Atta

A Bit of Difference
  • Critics' Opinion:

    Readers' Opinion:

     Not Yet Rated
  • Paperback: Dec 2012,
    224 pages.

    Publication Information

  • Rate this book


Book Reviewed by:
Tamara Smith

Buy This Book

About this Book

Print Excerpt


"But we can't decide who gets pregnant," Anne says. "So wouldn't that be perfect if one of us wakes up and boom?"

Deola has finished eating her salad, but she picks at the remnants of her grilled peppers and mushrooms as the thought of artificial insemination diminishes her appetite. Or perhaps it is the realization that she might one day have to consider the procedure, if she remains single for much longer.

This is an unexpected connection to Anne, but she won't talk about her own urge to nest, which has preoccupied her lately. Anne might regard what she has to say with anthropological curiosity: the African woman's perspective.

"There's always adoption," she says, wondering if this is appropriate.

"I did think of that," Anne says. "You get on a plane and go to a country that is war-torn or struggling with an epidemic and see so many orphans, so many of them. But at the end of the day, you have to have the humility to say to yourself, 'Maybe I am not the person to raise this kid. Maybe America is not the place to raise him or her.' You have to ask yourself these questions."

"You must," Deola says, crossing her arms, as if to brace herself for more of Anne's rectitude.

"It's that mindset," Anne says. "Our way is best, everyone else be damned, the world revolves around us. But I think when you travel widely enough, you quickly begin to realize it don't, don't you think?"

Deola reaches for her wine glass and almost says the word "actually," but she stops herself this time. Actually, the tongue jolt. Actually, the herald of assertions. She could insist that America is torn apart by the war and she could easily challenge Anne's assumption that the rest of the world is incapable of transgressions.

"I expect people in England are more open-minded," Anne says.

"England? I'm not so sure."

"I guess it would be more obvious to you living there. But that's why we are in such a mess over here, and it's a question of being able to reorient yourself. That's all it takes."

"A little reorientation," Deola says, the rim of her glass between her lips.

"You know?" Anne says. "If there is one thing this job teaches you, it's that. You can't get caught up in your own… whatever it is. Not in a world where people starve."

"No," Deola murmurs.

It is just as well she hesitated. She finishes her wine; so does Anne. A waiter approaches their table with dessert menus. Anne says she really shouldn't and opts for a black coffee. Deola has the passion fruit crème brûlée and asks for fresh raspberries on top.

From A Bit of Difference by Sefi Atta. Copyright © 2012 by Sefi Atta. Excerpted by permission of Interlink Books. All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher.

Membership Advantages
  • Reviews
  • "Beyond the Book" backstories
  • Free books to read and review (US only)
  • Find books by time period, setting & theme
  • Read-alike suggestions by book and author
  • Book club discussions
  • and much more!
  • Just $10 for 3 months or $35 for a year
  • More about membership!

Beyond the Book:
  Lagos Inspires Nigerian Writers

Member Benefits

Join Now!

Check the advantages!
Just $10 for 3 months or $35 for a year

    •  
    • FREE
    • MEMBER
    • Range of media reviews for each book
    • Excerpts of all featured books
    • Author bios, interviews and pronunciations
    • Browse by genre
    • Book club discussions
    • Book club advice and reading guides
    • BookBrowse reviews and "beyond the book" back-stories
    •  
    • Reviews of notable books ahead of publication
    •  
    • Free books to read and review (US Only)
    •  
    • Browse for the best books by time period, setting & theme
    •  
    • Read-alike suggestions for thousands of books and authors
    •  
    • 'My Reading List" to keep track of your books
    •  
Sign up, win books!

Editor's Choice

  • Book Jacket
    Mrs. Hemingway
    by Naomi Wood
    Naomi Wood's latest novel, Mrs. Hemingway, is a fictionalized biography covering in turn writer...
  • Book Jacket
    The Stranger on the Train
    by Abbie Taylor
    The opening chapter of Abbie Taylor's debut novel, The Stranger on the Train, took me right back to ...
  • Book Jacket
    Night Film
    by Marisha Pessl
    One of the central tenets of Hinduism states that the world as we know it is just an illusion –...

First Impressions

Members read and review books ahead
of publication. See what they think
in First Impressions!

Books that
expand your
horizons.

Visitors can view a lot of BookBrowse for free. Full access is for members only

Find out more.

Book Discussions
Book Jacket

The City
by Dean Koontz

Published Jul. 2014

Join the discussion!

  1.  66Tomlinson Hill:
    Chris Tomlinson

All Discussions

Win this book!
Win The Angel of Losses

The Angel of Losses

"Family saga, mystery, and myth intersect in Feldman's debut novel." - Booklist

Enter

Word Play

Solve this clue:

E C H A Silver L

and be entered to win..

Books thatinspire you.Handpicked.

Books you'll stay up all night reading; books that will whisk you to faraway places and times, books that will expand your mind and inspire you -- the kinds of books you just can't wait to tell your friends about.