"No Longer at Ease" debuted to largely positive reviews. Mercedes Mackay of the Royal African Society noted that "This second novel of Chinua Achebe is better than his first, and puts this Nigerian at the forefront of West African writers." Arthur Lerner of Los Angeles City College wrote that "The second novel of this young Nigerian author continues the promise of its predecessor, Things Fall Apart." The novel was widely praised for its realistic and vivid depictions of life in Lagos in the early 1960s. However, some reviewers felt that Achebe's attention to detail in setting was executed at the expense of fully fleshing out his characters. Ben Mkapa of the W.E.B. DuBois Institute wrote, "Achebe has a broad vision of the world he is writing about, but unfortunately this broadness is manifest at the expense of depth of characterisation. Clara, who is so central to Obi's final disillusionment, is but imperfectly drawn; most of the others are only nominal. His characters are representational rather than real."
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