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Where the Children Take Us: How One Family Achieved the Unimaginable

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In this spellbinding memoir, popular CNN anchor Zain E. Asher pays tribute to her mother's strength and determination to raise four successful children in the shadow of tragedy. Awaiting the return of her husband and young son from a road trip, Obiajulu Ejiofor receives shattering news. There's been a fatal car crash, and one of them is dead. In Where the Children Take Us, O In this spellbinding memoir, popular CNN anchor Zain E. Asher pays tribute to her mother's strength and determination to raise four successful children in the shadow of tragedy. Awaiting the return of her husband and young son from a road trip, Obiajulu Ejiofor receives shattering news. There's been a fatal car crash, and one of them is dead. In Where the Children Take Us, Obiajulu's daughter, Zain E. Asher, tells the story of her mother's harrowing fight to raise four children as a widowed immigrant in South London. There is tragedy in this tale, but it is not a tragedy. Drawing on tough-love parenting strategies, Obiajulu teaches her sons and daughters to overcome the daily pressures of poverty, crime and prejudice--and much more. With her relentless support, the children exceed all expectations--becoming a CNN anchor, an Oscar-nominated actor--Asher's older brother Chiwetel Ejiofor (12 Years a Slave)--a medical doctor, and a thriving entrepreneur. The generations-old Nigerian parenting techniques that lead to the family's salvation were born in the village where young Obiajulu and Arinze meet with their country on the brink of war. Together, they emigrate to London in the 1970s to escape the violence, but soon confront a different set of challenges in the West. When grief threatens to engulf her fractured family after the accident, Obiajulu, suddenly a single mother in a foreign land, refuses to accept defeat. As her children veer down the wrong path, she instills a family book club with Western literary classics, testing their resolve and challenging their deeper understanding. Desperate for inspiration, she plasters newspaper clippings of Black success stories on the walls and hunts for overachieving neighbors to serve as role models, all while running Shakespeare theatre lines with her son and finishing homework into the early morning with Zain. When distractions persist, she literally cuts the TV cord and installs a residential pay phone. The story of a woman who survived genocide, famine, poverty, and crushing grief to rise from war torn Africa to the streets of South London and eventually the drawing rooms of Buckingham Palace, Where the Children Take Us is an unforgettable portrait of strength, tenacity, love, and perseverance embodied in one towering woman.


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In this spellbinding memoir, popular CNN anchor Zain E. Asher pays tribute to her mother's strength and determination to raise four successful children in the shadow of tragedy. Awaiting the return of her husband and young son from a road trip, Obiajulu Ejiofor receives shattering news. There's been a fatal car crash, and one of them is dead. In Where the Children Take Us, O In this spellbinding memoir, popular CNN anchor Zain E. Asher pays tribute to her mother's strength and determination to raise four successful children in the shadow of tragedy. Awaiting the return of her husband and young son from a road trip, Obiajulu Ejiofor receives shattering news. There's been a fatal car crash, and one of them is dead. In Where the Children Take Us, Obiajulu's daughter, Zain E. Asher, tells the story of her mother's harrowing fight to raise four children as a widowed immigrant in South London. There is tragedy in this tale, but it is not a tragedy. Drawing on tough-love parenting strategies, Obiajulu teaches her sons and daughters to overcome the daily pressures of poverty, crime and prejudice--and much more. With her relentless support, the children exceed all expectations--becoming a CNN anchor, an Oscar-nominated actor--Asher's older brother Chiwetel Ejiofor (12 Years a Slave)--a medical doctor, and a thriving entrepreneur. The generations-old Nigerian parenting techniques that lead to the family's salvation were born in the village where young Obiajulu and Arinze meet with their country on the brink of war. Together, they emigrate to London in the 1970s to escape the violence, but soon confront a different set of challenges in the West. When grief threatens to engulf her fractured family after the accident, Obiajulu, suddenly a single mother in a foreign land, refuses to accept defeat. As her children veer down the wrong path, she instills a family book club with Western literary classics, testing their resolve and challenging their deeper understanding. Desperate for inspiration, she plasters newspaper clippings of Black success stories on the walls and hunts for overachieving neighbors to serve as role models, all while running Shakespeare theatre lines with her son and finishing homework into the early morning with Zain. When distractions persist, she literally cuts the TV cord and installs a residential pay phone. The story of a woman who survived genocide, famine, poverty, and crushing grief to rise from war torn Africa to the streets of South London and eventually the drawing rooms of Buckingham Palace, Where the Children Take Us is an unforgettable portrait of strength, tenacity, love, and perseverance embodied in one towering woman.

30 review for Where the Children Take Us: How One Family Achieved the Unimaginable

  1. 5 out of 5

    Val

    HUGE thanks to Amistad, as well as to NetGalley, for the opportunity to read and review an early copy of Where the Children Take Us. In Where the Children Take Us, Obiajulu’s daughter, Zain E. Asher, tells of her mother’s harrowing youth in war-torn Africa where she survived genocide, famine, and poverty. This was followed by a difficult fight to raise four children as a young, widowed, immigrant in South London. Yet, with Obiajulu's relentless support, her children exceeded all expectations! Th HUGE thanks to Amistad, as well as to NetGalley, for the opportunity to read and review an early copy of Where the Children Take Us. In Where the Children Take Us, Obiajulu’s daughter, Zain E. Asher, tells of her mother’s harrowing youth in war-torn Africa where she survived genocide, famine, and poverty. This was followed by a difficult fight to raise four children as a young, widowed, immigrant in South London. Yet, with Obiajulu's relentless support, her children exceeded all expectations! This book was absolutely riveting to read and is an incredibly moving tribute to the author’s mother!! Yes, some parts were heartbreaking, but others were absolutely joyful. I think Where the Children Take Us is my favorite memoir, ever. Honestly, I didn't want to put it down!! #WheretheChildrenTakeUs #NetGalley

  2. 4 out of 5

    Janilyn Kocher

    Where the Children Take Us is a lovely tribute to the author’s mother. Left as a widow in 1988, with three children and one on the way, Obiajulu was a force to reckon with. She worked long hours and demanded much from her children. She often struggled with making her children obey, but always kept up on discipline and direction. Parents like her create successful offspring and that’s exactly what she did. Hats off to her for never giving up. Thanks to Amistad, Edelweiss, and NetGalley for the earl Where the Children Take Us is a lovely tribute to the author’s mother. Left as a widow in 1988, with three children and one on the way, Obiajulu was a force to reckon with. She worked long hours and demanded much from her children. She often struggled with making her children obey, but always kept up on discipline and direction. Parents like her create successful offspring and that’s exactly what she did. Hats off to her for never giving up. Thanks to Amistad, Edelweiss, and NetGalley for the early read.

  3. 5 out of 5

    Dorothy Greco

    An incredible, inspirational story. Easy read (though there is some violence as Asher recounts a fatal accident and details of civil war.)

  4. 4 out of 5

    Rachel

    This book tells the story of a Nigerian family shattered by tragedy, and of a mother’s sacrifices for the sake of her children and their success. The events and suffering that Obiajulu experienced are unimaginable, but even more remarkable is the strength and determination she demonstrates despite each struggle and hardship. This story is one of triumph in the face of adversity and will inspire you to keep fighting hard. “We are nothing if not fighters. We fight for what we want from life, we fig This book tells the story of a Nigerian family shattered by tragedy, and of a mother’s sacrifices for the sake of her children and their success. The events and suffering that Obiajulu experienced are unimaginable, but even more remarkable is the strength and determination she demonstrates despite each struggle and hardship. This story is one of triumph in the face of adversity and will inspire you to keep fighting hard. “We are nothing if not fighters. We fight for what we want from life, we fight the forces that stand in our way, and most of all, we fight for our families.”

  5. 5 out of 5

    Darcia Helle

    Zain Asher's mother was a Nigerian immigrant living in London, pregnant with her fourth child, when she lost her husband in a tragic accident. As if starting life over in a foreign country isn’t enough of a challenge, she then became a single parent. I can’t imagine being in her situation. While the content here is often heartbreaking, the writing is conversational, and there's always the promise of better things to come. My favorite part of this book was being immersed in Nigerian culture and cus Zain Asher's mother was a Nigerian immigrant living in London, pregnant with her fourth child, when she lost her husband in a tragic accident. As if starting life over in a foreign country isn’t enough of a challenge, she then became a single parent. I can’t imagine being in her situation. While the content here is often heartbreaking, the writing is conversational, and there's always the promise of better things to come. My favorite part of this book was being immersed in Nigerian culture and customs. I feel like I learned a great deal about the country and its people. Asher's mother and her story feel like a message of hope when darkness threatens to swallow us. *I received a free copy from HarperCollins.*

  6. 5 out of 5

    Barb

    I’m so thankful that my friend, Susan, gave “Where The Children Take Us” such a stellar review because I immediately requested it from my local library. Zain Asher’s memoir of her life in London as a child of Nigerian immigrants is a testament to a mother’s perseverance, determination and love to see that her children succeed…and they surely did. I couldn’t help comparing her fierce style of parenting and her belief in education to what seems to be happening in the United States within our educa I’m so thankful that my friend, Susan, gave “Where The Children Take Us” such a stellar review because I immediately requested it from my local library. Zain Asher’s memoir of her life in London as a child of Nigerian immigrants is a testament to a mother’s perseverance, determination and love to see that her children succeed…and they surely did. I couldn’t help comparing her fierce style of parenting and her belief in education to what seems to be happening in the United States within our education system…the whitewashing of our history to make it palatable for the uninformed, the banning of books and the general disdain for academia and education will result in a population devoid of critical thinking skills and perfect targets for the powerful and corrupt. Scary stuff! I highly recommend this love letter to a mother (& Nigerian culture) that suffered from terrible tragedy but never gave up and fought for a better life for her children…heartwarming and so inspiring!

  7. 5 out of 5

    Catherine Allison

    A memoir about the fierce love of a Nigerian immigrant mother- I loved every single page!

  8. 4 out of 5

    Suzanne

    This was a memoir that gripped and didn’t let go. It feels like the story of the author’s mother and a tribute to her, more than an autobiography. It was truly amazing to see what Obiajulu and her family endured and yet still move forward with hope. Also, Asher makes an good point about how much of the world has no idea what happened to Nigeria in the 1960s because of everything else going on in the world. One of the things I would have liked to see more explored is how the Catholic faith helped This was a memoir that gripped and didn’t let go. It feels like the story of the author’s mother and a tribute to her, more than an autobiography. It was truly amazing to see what Obiajulu and her family endured and yet still move forward with hope. Also, Asher makes an good point about how much of the world has no idea what happened to Nigeria in the 1960s because of everything else going on in the world. One of the things I would have liked to see more explored is how the Catholic faith helped/or hindered Obiajulu. It is mentioned throughout her life as being important but the story focuses more on the secular side of success and community. The worlds discussed are so different from what I know, it is a story that threw my life into perspective and gives me much to think over.

  9. 5 out of 5

    Beth

    I loved this memoir about a Nigerian family, who overcame a tragic loss and multiple hardships. This is the story familiar to all parents who want more for their children than they had, but it wouldn’t have happened without the mom’s dedication, an enormous amount of hard work, sheer determination, and tough love. I loved learning about Nigerian history and culture; I intend to read more about this remarkable country.

  10. 4 out of 5

    Christie Maliyackel

    This was an AMAZING memoir of perseverance, fierce determination and hard work. I already had a special fondness for Nigerian culture (based on what I knew of it from my - albeit few - Nigerian friends), but I learned so much and developed such a deeper appreciation for it after reading this book. There were a few points near the end where I teared up and wanted to pump my fist in the air, feeling an odd sort of shared triumph in the author’s successes (I grew so attached to her by reading her w This was an AMAZING memoir of perseverance, fierce determination and hard work. I already had a special fondness for Nigerian culture (based on what I knew of it from my - albeit few - Nigerian friends), but I learned so much and developed such a deeper appreciation for it after reading this book. There were a few points near the end where I teared up and wanted to pump my fist in the air, feeling an odd sort of shared triumph in the author’s successes (I grew so attached to her by reading her words!). Ultimately, this is a story of resilience and a testament to what a mother’s love, discipline and determination can do in paving a successful path for her (four) children. Her disciplinary tactics, by the way, were INCREDIBLE (I mean, a pay phone in her own home… 😂).

  11. 5 out of 5

    Deborah Royce

    #FridayReads -Very happy to share with you Zain Asher’s inspiring memoir, Where the Children Take Us! I can’t wait to talk with Zain this Wednesday, Aug 10 at the The Ocean House 6pm. #Watch: https://lnkd.in/epgRRRgi Amistad Books #FridayReads -Very happy to share with you Zain Asher’s inspiring memoir, Where the Children Take Us! I can’t wait to talk with Zain this Wednesday, Aug 10 at the The Ocean House 6pm. #Watch: https://lnkd.in/epgRRRgi Amistad Books

  12. 5 out of 5

    Steve

    A powerful book, beautifully written, that will stay with me for a long time. I cried more times than I'd care to admit. This changed the way I view parenting, community and inspiration. A true must read. A powerful book, beautifully written, that will stay with me for a long time. I cried more times than I'd care to admit. This changed the way I view parenting, community and inspiration. A true must read.

  13. 4 out of 5

    Meyers Ezzell

    This book is eye-opening and inspiring. I can genuinely say I am walking away with something after reading this. I HIGHLY recommend this amazing non-fiction about an empowering family who survived and fought for success.

  14. 4 out of 5

    Debbie Boucher

    Interesting and inspiring story of a Nigerian immigrant family that achieved incredible success. Enjoy!

  15. 4 out of 5

    Cin

    This read gave me a taste of everything. The perseverance in this book was awe so inspiring and the sheer grit of the family to keep trudging forward had me captivated from page one.

  16. 5 out of 5

    Beth Walsh

    This was the most amazing & inspiring memoir! Written by @zainashercnn, it’s mostly a love letter to her mother & her Nigerian culture, as she attributes her extraordinary family’s success to her upbringing. Her mother raised her & her 3 siblings by herself after her husband when killed in a car accident when the author was only 5 years old. I learned so much about Nigerian history and how a single determined woman can change the course of history for her family. Highly recommend this one!!

  17. 4 out of 5

    Tina Rae

    So this memoir is absolutely AMAZING and I can’t sing enough praises about it!! I am so, so glad I read this one! It is honestly one of the best memoirs I have EVER read and easily one of my favorite reads of the year. Not only is the writing absolutely STUNNING but the story itself is so powerful. I am always so fascinated by origin stories and what shapes people. And this checked all of those boxes. As the premise states, this is a tragic story but this is not a tragedy. I laughed. I cried. And So this memoir is absolutely AMAZING and I can’t sing enough praises about it!! I am so, so glad I read this one! It is honestly one of the best memoirs I have EVER read and easily one of my favorite reads of the year. Not only is the writing absolutely STUNNING but the story itself is so powerful. I am always so fascinated by origin stories and what shapes people. And this checked all of those boxes. As the premise states, this is a tragic story but this is not a tragedy. I laughed. I cried. And I learned so much through these pages. This is also a story about how much representation matters. I really appreciated the stories about seeing others succeed and that helping the author keep her own dreams alive. Especially the story about how her "punishment" for wrongdoings was to drive to Oxford to remind her of her dreams and get her back on track. So please. Pick this one up. It is an absolutely beautiful book. I cannot say enough wonderful things about it. I know it's a book I will think of often and will definitely be reading again. I’m so thankful Asher shared this story with us! Thank you to BiblioLifestyle and Amistad Books for sending this my way!

  18. 5 out of 5

    LeAnne

    The story of a Nigerian family — and the role that education plays. It is a story of country strife, family tragedy, one determined, resilient, full-of-courage mother and the triumph of the next generation. The whole mindset of the Nigerian nation is to educate the next generation. It is a fascinating read. Too many Favorite quotes/ideas to mention here— let me capture this one: p 89 “ Rarely do we appreciate the small moments that change our lives for the better as they’re happening. And so it w The story of a Nigerian family — and the role that education plays. It is a story of country strife, family tragedy, one determined, resilient, full-of-courage mother and the triumph of the next generation. The whole mindset of the Nigerian nation is to educate the next generation. It is a fascinating read. Too many Favorite quotes/ideas to mention here— let me capture this one: p 89 “ Rarely do we appreciate the small moments that change our lives for the better as they’re happening. And so it was for my mother, who thought she was being banished to a steamy dungeon when in fact, the trajectory of her life — and mine— would improve exponentially as a direct result of this unwanted change”. It is this twist of fate when her mother meets Mary, a woman who was “living in a world with no ceilings.”And introduced a whole family to an attitude of “why not”. And “yes, you can”. P95 “This idea of uplifters”— people of similar backgrounds who can open our minds to new possibilities “ Lesson: keep an open mind and heart as life unfolds. Do not hold your small vision for yourself so tightly. God’s plans are bigger than you can imagine.

  19. 4 out of 5

    Gina

    A beautiful memoir that I couldn’t put down, I loved every page. Nigerian culture values education and family above all else. Their community and generations of their family help raise their children. Lots of tough love which was hard for her children but was meant to build character and make them strive for more. Children obeyed their elders and parents and rarely questioned them. Their community are called “uplifters”, anyone who helps support the children to succeed and believe in themselves. A beautiful memoir that I couldn’t put down, I loved every page. Nigerian culture values education and family above all else. Their community and generations of their family help raise their children. Lots of tough love which was hard for her children but was meant to build character and make them strive for more. Children obeyed their elders and parents and rarely questioned them. Their community are called “uplifters”, anyone who helps support the children to succeed and believe in themselves. The family originated in Nigeria and escaped wars, famine and poverty and settled in South London. There they faced racism and struggled to succeed. But this young widowed mom of 4 children was amazing and not only became a pharmacist herself, but also raised 4 successful children. The tenacity, discipline and love that she uses to raise her children is a great legacy. “We were not bound by our neighborhood, the pain of our loss, or the low expectations of the world around us. It was just the opposite. We were expected to thrive at all costs. And so we did.” Highly recommend.

  20. 5 out of 5

    Megan

    This is a memoir dedicated to the author’s determined Nigerian mother. When the author was six years old, her father and 11 year old brother, Chiwetel Elijiofor (Oscar nominated) were in a horrific car crash on a heritage tour of Nigeria and her father was killed and brother believed to be dead and taken to the morgue, only to be alive. This is the story of carrying on in the midst of intense grief and loss and becoming your best self. Her mother sacrificed so much to help her children become su This is a memoir dedicated to the author’s determined Nigerian mother. When the author was six years old, her father and 11 year old brother, Chiwetel Elijiofor (Oscar nominated) were in a horrific car crash on a heritage tour of Nigeria and her father was killed and brother believed to be dead and taken to the morgue, only to be alive. This is the story of carrying on in the midst of intense grief and loss and becoming your best self. Her mother sacrificed so much to help her children become successful in life. Although the author was usually the only black child in her classes, her mother wanted her to learn that she could do hard things. Life is not a competition between people but to become your own best. When one person does well, it lifts and honors those around them. This book was a clean read.

  21. 5 out of 5

    Linda Cousens

    An incredibly powerful memoir of a Nigerian mother who will sacrifice everything for the sake of her children. She is raised during the time of civil war in Nigeria when she lives through genocide, famine and severe poverty. She moves at a young age with her husband to east London where she has great difficulty adapting to the huge changes between Africa and England. While she is pregnant with her fourth child, her beloved husband is killed in a car crash and she is left alone to raise her childr An incredibly powerful memoir of a Nigerian mother who will sacrifice everything for the sake of her children. She is raised during the time of civil war in Nigeria when she lives through genocide, famine and severe poverty. She moves at a young age with her husband to east London where she has great difficulty adapting to the huge changes between Africa and England. While she is pregnant with her fourth child, her beloved husband is killed in a car crash and she is left alone to raise her children in London. She owns a pharmacy working long hours, then comes home to take care of her four children, doing homework with them, and teaching them about discipline and the importance of education. A book about one woman's perseverance through many hardships will stay with me for a long time.

  22. 5 out of 5

    Gel Rasper

    Wow. I’m inspired. I love how David Oyelowo (review on the back of the book), puts it - “A beautiful love letter to a mother who miraculously pushes through tragedy to steer her children toward their seemingly impossible dreams through a methodology all her own.” A couple good quotes: “The binder, the wall clippings, the people on TV - they were constant reminders that we were not bound by our neighborhood, the pain of our loss, or the low expectations of the world around us. It was just the oppo Wow. I’m inspired. I love how David Oyelowo (review on the back of the book), puts it - “A beautiful love letter to a mother who miraculously pushes through tragedy to steer her children toward their seemingly impossible dreams through a methodology all her own.” A couple good quotes: “The binder, the wall clippings, the people on TV - they were constant reminders that we were not bound by our neighborhood, the pain of our loss, or the low expectations of the world around us. It was just the opposite. We were expected to thrive at all costs. So we did.” “You aren’t competing with them. Prepare as well as you can so you can be your best, not their best. When I am at my best, I know that I don’t need to beat anyone else - or tear anyone down - to reach my highest potential.”

  23. 4 out of 5

    Kemba

    “Life is either pay now or pay later, but if you pay later, there’ll be interest” Such a powerful old Nigerian statement. Obiajulu Ejiofor is an uplifter. Zain did an incredible job telling her mother’s story. Life brings about struggle in no uncertain terms. The resilience, dedication, and determination of a married woman living out dreams with her husband only to lose him to death in a blink of an eye can put any woman on her back. However, to muster strength and discipline in the face of adve “Life is either pay now or pay later, but if you pay later, there’ll be interest” Such a powerful old Nigerian statement. Obiajulu Ejiofor is an uplifter. Zain did an incredible job telling her mother’s story. Life brings about struggle in no uncertain terms. The resilience, dedication, and determination of a married woman living out dreams with her husband only to lose him to death in a blink of an eye can put any woman on her back. However, to muster strength and discipline in the face of adversity and raise successful children takes a special person. Obiajulu is that special person. The rating of 4 stars is due to the beginning being a little slow. The introduction the family and backstories dragged a bit. I recommend reading this for sure.

  24. 5 out of 5

    Stephanie Affinito

    This is an absolutely beautiful, brilliantly written account of one family’s triumph through loss to an extraordinary life. Asher starts her family’s story with the heart-breaking loss of her father, shares her mother’s incredible strength and desire to see her children succeed while grappling with that loss and ends with her own story and the story still left to tell. I felt like I was reading this as multiple versions of myself: my younger self working so hard to be good at something, my curre This is an absolutely beautiful, brilliantly written account of one family’s triumph through loss to an extraordinary life. Asher starts her family’s story with the heart-breaking loss of her father, shares her mother’s incredible strength and desire to see her children succeed while grappling with that loss and ends with her own story and the story still left to tell. I felt like I was reading this as multiple versions of myself: my younger self working so hard to be good at something, my current self trying to learn how to be a better parent and my future self hopefully looking back with pride on what my daughter would say about what I taught her, too. This is a parenting manifesto just as much as it is a memoir and I am absolutely taken with this book.

  25. 5 out of 5

    Sophie Ngugi

    This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here. I enjoyed this book. The story of persistence, determination to thrive despite the difficulties. When a woman loses the love of her life and feel like the world has stopped, locking herself and keeping off the sunshine; and another women, her mother steps in to remind her to raise herself up as the children depend on her. An African mother supporting her children, pushing them achieve so much in life. Racism, teenage defiance, naysayers who reminded her that her children were “not good enough “, I enjoyed this book. The story of persistence, determination to thrive despite the difficulties. When a woman loses the love of her life and feel like the world has stopped, locking herself and keeping off the sunshine; and another women, her mother steps in to remind her to raise herself up as the children depend on her. An African mother supporting her children, pushing them achieve so much in life. Racism, teenage defiance, naysayers who reminded her that her children were “not good enough “, less exposure to what the children needed to learn to thrive didn’t hinder her. Preparing in advance. Practising. Persistence. Kudos Zane Asher for sharing the inspiration story of your life. It’s not easy to imagine what one has gone through in life to be where they are.

  26. 5 out of 5

    Lolita

    This is a story of a mother's determination through all odds to help her children succeed. While pregnant with her fourth child, she learns her husband and son were in a car crash in which her husband died. While enduring her own grief she finds the strength she needs to support and inspire her children. Children who go on to exceed her expectations - becoming a medical doctor, a CNN anchor, an Oscar nomimated actor and an entrepreneur. She refused to be defeated as she guided her children with This is a story of a mother's determination through all odds to help her children succeed. While pregnant with her fourth child, she learns her husband and son were in a car crash in which her husband died. While enduring her own grief she finds the strength she needs to support and inspire her children. Children who go on to exceed her expectations - becoming a medical doctor, a CNN anchor, an Oscar nomimated actor and an entrepreneur. She refused to be defeated as she guided her children with love by showing them the way to greatness is through perseverance in the face of adversity. Great read. Diva Reviewer - Angelia

  27. 5 out of 5

    Chelsea Fox

    I loved this book so much! Getting to learn more about what life was like for @zainashercnn growing up and also learning her mother’s story growing up in Nigeria, and then later moving to and raising a family in London was so eye opening! You also get to introduced to her siblings, one of which I had no idea is in two of my favorite movies which was so cool! I was just blown away with her story and everything that she went through with losing her father at a young age and how her mother persever I loved this book so much! Getting to learn more about what life was like for @zainashercnn growing up and also learning her mother’s story growing up in Nigeria, and then later moving to and raising a family in London was so eye opening! You also get to introduced to her siblings, one of which I had no idea is in two of my favorite movies which was so cool! I was just blown away with her story and everything that she went through with losing her father at a young age and how her mother persevered and raised some amazing children! If you are a non-fiction/memoir fan, I highly recommend picking this up!! It was so great and I am so glad I was given the opportunity to read it!

  28. 5 out of 5

    Kati Bourque

    This book is amazing! I am so glad I read it! While I didn't know Zain Asher prior to reading this book (Sorry, I don't watch CNN or the news, really), I now feel like I want to be her friend! While I knew about her famous brother, I had no idea about the accident that nearly took his life. And after reading this book, I wish I had a Nigerian mother that had raised me to believe that my success is the success of my village. I want to take some of what I have learned and use it with my own childr This book is amazing! I am so glad I read it! While I didn't know Zain Asher prior to reading this book (Sorry, I don't watch CNN or the news, really), I now feel like I want to be her friend! While I knew about her famous brother, I had no idea about the accident that nearly took his life. And after reading this book, I wish I had a Nigerian mother that had raised me to believe that my success is the success of my village. I want to take some of what I have learned and use it with my own children - can anyone say no cellphones or television for the next six years? This book is a must read!

  29. 4 out of 5

    Blaine Strickland

    I read this book in hardcover over a week, after receiving a recommendation from a friend. This is the autobiography of a young Nigerian woman and her extended family as they navigate from the Third World to the First World. It's a remarkable journey when you consider the depths of where they started to the heights achieved in just 20 years. The author credits her mother's iron-will along with the "it takes a village - and we mean it!" philosophy of certain Nigerian communities. The book will ma I read this book in hardcover over a week, after receiving a recommendation from a friend. This is the autobiography of a young Nigerian woman and her extended family as they navigate from the Third World to the First World. It's a remarkable journey when you consider the depths of where they started to the heights achieved in just 20 years. The author credits her mother's iron-will along with the "it takes a village - and we mean it!" philosophy of certain Nigerian communities. The book will make you feel good about family and faith, and possibly reinforce your own willingness to persevere.

  30. 5 out of 5

    Drea

    Put this memoir in the “THIS IS WHY WE READ” column. Gorgeous. Breathtaking. Inspiring. Nigerian-born Zain Asher tells the story of her parents and her own life which is incredible. I loved the story about her mom’s rules as the author was in the last two years of high school and cried happy tears when the author shared her accomplishments with her mom. The Nigerian culture is beautiful. I’m so glad I read this book and thank Amistad Press for the opportunity to do so. Read this one. Have your b Put this memoir in the “THIS IS WHY WE READ” column. Gorgeous. Breathtaking. Inspiring. Nigerian-born Zain Asher tells the story of her parents and her own life which is incredible. I loved the story about her mom’s rules as the author was in the last two years of high school and cried happy tears when the author shared her accomplishments with her mom. The Nigerian culture is beautiful. I’m so glad I read this book and thank Amistad Press for the opportunity to do so. Read this one. Have your book club read it. Make Nigerian food and eat and talk and enjoy.

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