Thursday, May 23, 2024

Book Review; “How Your Wings Grow”: A Lesson in Family.

January 12, 2023 by  
Filed under Ent., News, TS, Weekly Columns

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( Family is a very important dynamic, and this dynamic can shape who we are for better or for worse. There can be lots of love and loyalty, as well as pain and betrayal. It is hard at times to understand the layers that make a family fall apart, or what would pit siblings against one another. Children can come from the same parents and handle trauma in a different way that appear to injure each other. Many lessons regarding how family, and one could argue generational curses, play out passionately in Rimma Onoseta’s “How You Grow Wings”.

“The skeptic in me would not allow me to be excites, like Chizi. Paulina had spent a lot of money on us and learnt a long time ago that kindness often came at a cost.”

The reader will experience an array of emotions, and the book could cause one to look at their own sibling and family relationships. I was on a rollercoaster while reading this book, but I had to know what would happen next. You’ll find that regardless of how you feel the pages will keep turning. There is just so much to unpack.

How Your Wings Grow

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“Spear the rod and spoil the child. That was what Mama said when she broke a cane on Cheta’s back. Spare the rod and spoil the child. That’s what Mana said after she slapped Cheta so hard, her ring sliced Cheta’s face. Spare the rod and spoil the child. That’s what Mama said when she flung a frying pan at Cheta’s head and Cheta missed school because she had to get stitches at the hospital. Spare the rod and spoil the child. It was for our own good. That’s what they told us.”

The is a moment where each character could be the villain in the eyes of the reader depending on how your principles align. However, this book can allow readers to have open discussion regarding “Mommy” issues. That is a very difficult topic as mothers are placed on pedestals, and they tend to have the authority to change the narrative in their favor when they are the beloved yet feared matriarch. This is not the same grace given to fathers under any circumstance.  Allowing an open dialog about hurt that has experienced at the hands of ones mother is an opportunity for healing, accountability, and the building of positive relationships.

“You’re a coward. You knew how Mama treated me growing up was not right, but you never spoke up for me. You just sat there and watched it happen and you didn’t care because it wasn’t happening to you.”

The dynamics of the parental relationship can deeply affect that of siblings. The book shows this to be true at every turn. I’m definitely not one to give spoilers, but this is something else that can be flushed out in discussion. “How You Grow Wings” is a book that should be read individually, and collectively. Families can read this book together, it can be discussed in a therapy session, sistah circles can read together, brothers can read it together…this book should be read and objectively discussed in as many groups as possible. One of the beauties of literature is, we can use the text to work through the pains that are a reality. Books like this allow us to identify issues and get an understanding then apply that knowledge to self. This is definitely not an easy read, but it can be a life changing experience; I highly suggest embarking on this literary journey.

How You Grow Wings” can be found at your local bookstore, Amazon, and anywhere books are sold.

Staff Writer; Christian Starr

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