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What Is Not Yours Is Not Yours Summary and Reviews

What Is Not Yours Is Not Yours

Stories

by Helen Oyeyemi

What Is Not Yours Is Not Yours by Helen Oyeyemi X
What Is Not Yours Is Not Yours by Helen Oyeyemi
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  • Published Mar 2016
    336 pages
    Genre: Short Stories

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Book Summary

From the award-winning author of Boy, Snow, Bird and Mr. Fox comes an enchanting collection of intertwined stories.

Playful, ambitious, and exquisitely imagined, What Is Not Yours Is Not Yours is cleverly built around the idea of keys, literal and metaphorical. The key to a house, the key to a heart, the key to a secret - Oyeyemi's keys not only unlock elements of her characters' lives, they promise further labyrinths on the other side. In "Books and Roses" one special key opens a library, a garden, and clues to at least two lovers' fates. In "Is Your Blood as Red as This?" an unlikely key opens the heart of a student at a puppeteering school. "'Sorry' Doesn't Sweeten Her Tea" involves a "house of locks," where doors can be closed only with a key - with surprising, unobservable developments. And in "If a Book Is Locked There's Probably a Good Reason for That Don't You Think," a key keeps a mystical diary locked (for good reason).

Oyeyemi's tales span multiple times and landscapes as they tease boundaries between coexisting realities. Is a key a gate, a gift, or an invitation? What Is Not Yours Is Not Yours captivates as it explores the many possible answers.

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Reviews

Media Reviews

"Starred Review. For all the portentous metaphors (keys and locks appear in every story) and all the convoluted and fabulist narrations, Oyeyemi's stories are often cheerfully sentimental." - Kirkus

"Readers will be drawn to Oyeyemi's contagious enthusiasm for her characters and deep sympathy for their unrequited or thwarted loves." - Publishers Weekly

"A beguiling collection." - Booklist

"Magical and show stopping." - Elle.com

"Stunning...Highly imaginative and enchanting...This collection is Oyeyemi at her best." - Buzzfeed, Included in "Most Exciting Books Coming in 2016"

"Enchanting." - BookRiot

This information about What Is Not Yours Is Not Yours was first featured in "The BookBrowse Review" - BookBrowse's membership magazine, and in our weekly "Publishing This Week" newsletter. Publication information is for the USA, and (unless stated otherwise) represents the first print edition. The reviews are necessarily limited to those that were available to us ahead of publication. If you are the publisher or author and feel that they do not properly reflect the range of media opinion now available, send us a message with the mainstream reviews that you would like to see added.

Any "Author Information" displayed below reflects the author's biography at the time this particular book was published.

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Author Information

Helen Oyeyemi Author Biography

Photo: © Manchul Kim

Helen Oyeyemi is the author of the story collection What Is Not Yours Is Not Yours, which won the PEN Open Book Award, along with seven novels, including Peaces, Gingerbread, and Boy, Snow, Bird, which was a finalist for the 2014 Los Angeles Times Book Prize.

Link to Helen Oyeyemi's Website

Name Pronunciation
Helen Oyeyemi: ooo-yee-yemi

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