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A REESE WITHERSPOON x HELLO SUNSHINE BOOK CLUB PICK
A NEW YORK TIMES NOTABLE BOOK OF THE YEAR
A Must-Read Novel: The New York Times Book Review * BuzzFeed * Time * Marie Claire * Parade * Travel + Leisure * Ms. * Bustle * The Millions * Book Riot * PopSugar * HelloGiggles * Kirkus Reviews* Good Morning America
“[A] mesmerizing debut novel.”
—The New York Times Book Review
“A story that kept me tied to the page, told in masterful, seamless prose.”
“I love this book so much I turned the pages so fast . . . It’s all about the search for independence and being true to yourself and who you really are.”
Afi Tekple is a young seamstress in Ghana. Smart and pretty, she has also been convinced by her mother to marry a man she doesn’t know: a wealthy businessman named Elikem. His family has chosen Afi in the hopes that she will distract him from a current relationship they disapprove of. When Afi is moved from her small hometown to live in Accra, Ghana’s gleaming capital full of wealth and sophistication, she is not prepared for the way her life will change. But she has agreed to this marriage in order to give her mother the financial security she desperately needs, and so Afi must see it through. Or must she?
A witty, moving, and smart debut novel, His Only Wife takes place in a world of men who want their wives to be beautiful, to be good cooks and mothers, to grant their husbands forbearance. And in Afi, we meet a delightful, brave, and relatable heroine who just may break all the rules.
In Africa, where most states have not prioritized the prevention of violence against women, and the majority of perpetrators act with impunity, there is a major implementation gap. This gap is acute in some post-conflict countries on the continent. Thus, despite the presence of laws on various forms of violence against women in most African countries, justice remains inaccessible to most victims.
In Global Norms and Local Action, Peace A. Medie studies the domestic implementation of international norms by examining how and why two post-conflict states in Africa, Liberia and Côte d'Ivoire, have differed in their responses to rape and domestic violence. Specifically, she looks at the roles of the United Nations and women's movements in the establishment of specialized criminal justice sector agencies, and the referral of cases for prosecution. She argues that variation in implementation in Liberia and Côte d'Ivoire can be explained by the levels of international and domestic pressures that states face and by the favorability of domestic political and institutional conditions. Medie's study is based on interviews with over 300 policymakers, bureaucrats, staff at the UN and NGOs, police officers, and survivors of domestic violence and rape an unprecedented depth of research into women's rights and gender violence norm implementation in post-conflict countries. Furthermore, through her interviews with survivors of violence, Medie explains not only how states implement anti-rape and anti-domestic violence norms, but also how women experience and are affected by these norms. She draws on this research to recommend that states adopt a holistic approach to addressing violence against women.