Segun Starchild hails from the Yoruba tribe in Nigeria, is the Director of Akasha Publishing, and currently works in IT development in London.
He is a self-confessed seeker after ‘The Truth’ and from what I can gather (from this novel at least), his books lean more towards the esoteric and philosophical. Nothing wrong with that; we could all do with a bit more truth, and a bit more reflection, these days.
You may remember the viral dress image from a few years ago. The basic premise of this story is that there is an actual physical / chemical / biological difference between the brains of those who saw a blue and black dress, and those who saw a white and gold dress. These ‘White and Gold People’ then start evolving in ways which the ‘Blue and Black People’ could never hope to replicate, their being an evolutionary dead-end.
It’s a simple yet fun premise, firmly rooted in popular culture, and one which is well worth exploring in terms of differing perspectives of the same thing (especially in these polarised times); neither view is ‘wrong’, but they are at odds. However, this not only ‘dates’ the novel to early 2015 – which is therefore out of touch with today, and which will only get worse – it also risks alienating some of Starchild’s potential readership by making it either too ‘young’ / modern or too ‘old-fashioned’ / outré.
Unfortunately, I have to mention the clumsiness of some of the grammar used in the book. Writing anything in a second language is always going to be troublesome, especially a language as full of idiosyncrasies as English. I have no doubt that Starchild’s English is better than my Yoruba, but I can’t help but feel that he should have engaged an excellent copy editor to tighten it all up – especially as, considering some of the content, this book is definitely not aimed at the Teen or Young Adult markets. A prime example of writing in a second language is Joseph Conrad’s ‘Heart of Darkness’, which was all the more powerful for the used language’s simplicity.
The characters are all a little two-dimensional – not to mention strangely blasé about some of the momentous events, while also being overwhelmed by, or overreacting to, ‘smaller’ things. I’m afraid that I found the dialogue unconvincing, too.
Looking at some of the other reviews online, I have to query whether we were reading the same book, or if I missed something. It’s totally possible – maybe it’s the ‘Blue-Black’/’White-Gold’, all over again.
I really wanted to like it. Fantastical elements, philosophy, and social commentary; all were set up to be explored in the reader’s journey.
It’s just a shame the writing wasn’t honed enough to pull it off.
A dress causes a huge debate across the world as some see it as black and blue and others see it as white and gold. The white and gold people suddenly start to get even stranger visions and develop super human abilities making the black and blue people seem old and inadequate. The government try to quarantine and control their power but the white and gold people react setting the stage for a war between the rival groups.
I do not get paid for blog tours or reviews, and this is my honest feedback.