The Captain’s Log – rosewater (Tade Thompson)

Ahoy there me mateys!  This be the fifth book in me Ports for Plunder – 19 Books in 2019 list.  I wanted to read this ever since seeing Sarah @ theillustratedpage’s post called “10 Science Fiction Books By Authors of Color” back on 11/20/17.  In 2018 I read Thompson’s novella, the murders of molly southbourne, and adored it.  So in 2019 I finally made time to read rosewater.  Sarah’s post described the book thusly:

Nigeria, 2066. Kaaro lives in the city of Rosewater, a settlement that grew up around an alien biodome. He spends his days providing psychic protection for a bank, but secretly, he’s the most powerful psychic of Section 35, a secret agency within the Nigerian government. As other psychics begin dying one by one, Kaaro will defy the agency to find an answer.

Thompson brings his futuristic vision of Nigeria to stunning life, complete with psychics and strange alien organisms.

.Secret psychic agent in 2066 and aliens.  Aye, ye scalawags!  The aliens in this novel are housed in a dome just outside the city of Rosewater.  Once a year the dome opens and whoever is nearby can be cured of any ailments they have.  Cancer, broken arm, whatever – gone – but there are some unsavoury consequences that can occur too.  There is no guarantee for the sick but hope makes for a huge tourist industry during the Opening.  Kaaro has been in the dome and is rather jaded about the whole ceremony.  And life.

After reading Thompson’s novella, I knew that this was going to be different in terms of style and it was.  There are three separate timelines which did take some getting used to.  One timeline involves Kaaro as a young man and how he used his newfound abilities as a thief.  There is another timeline with Kaaro’s life as a secret agent.  And then there is the present.  The setting of this book is dark, gritty, and can be nasty.  Torture and murder are rampant and present on the page.  I absolutely loved the world-building in this one and the projections Thompson chose to make about the political climate moving forward from our era.  There are a lot of moving parts but with a small bit of effort on me part, the tale turned out to be so worth it.

So if ye like a blend of film noir, first contact with aliens, psychics, murder mystery, dreamscapes, characters with complicated pasts, excellent world-building, puzzles, a plausible future world, and a little bit of romance etc. then ye should pick this one up.  It seems intimidating but I know that any crew members of mine are up to the challenge.  The destination is worth it.  Arrrrr!

Goodreads’ website has this to say about the novel:

To visit the author’s website go to:

Tade Thompson – Author

To buy the book go to:

rosewater – Book

To add to Goodreads go to:

Yer Ports for Plunder List

Previous Reviews for Me 19 in 2019 Books

the lie tree – Frances Hardinge (Captain’s Log – Fantasy)

children of blood and bone – Tomi Adeyemi (Captain’s Log – YA Fantasy)

summerland – Hannu Rajaniemi (Captain’s Log – Sci-Fi)

the ship (Captain’s Log – Sci-Fi Dystopia)

26 thoughts on “The Captain’s Log – rosewater (Tade Thompson)

    1. Welcome matey! I wasn’t sure I was going to read the next book in the series but now that I know who the protagonist is I am going to have to fit it in somewhere. Just have a stack of arcs and library books that get the top slots at the moment.
      x The Captain

      Liked by 1 person

  1. Lately, I’ve been reading more books set in Africa, but they’re pretty much all journalism or memoir. I don’t know enough about Africa’s countries to feel confident reading fiction set in those countries. One thing I learned recently is that a lot of northwest African is Muslim. I always thought it was specifically northeast Africa. And it makes a huge difference! Some areas have child soldiers, other areas are quite liberal.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I think too many people just lump all of Africa as one place instead of being full of diversity of people and cultures. The difference I have found in a lot of the sci-fi set in Nigeria is the level of torture and abuse that are a part of the daily life. I am not saying it can’t happen in the US (cause it does) but even the “good guys” seem to think torture is a valid method to get information. My knowledge of African countries is not that great so I don’t really know what day to day living is like.
      x The Captain


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