Bite-size Review: Efuru | Flora Nwapa

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Efuru | Flora Nwapa

Every so often a voice thunders from a distance and enraptures our imagination. The Nigerian writer Flora Nwapa, is one of those voices. Her first novel Efuru is a delightful read yet rarely found in the top ten collection of African literature. The central character Efuru, with all her abundant grace, beauty and virtue is blighted by misfortune when her very essence as a woman is measured against her ability to conceive again after the loss of her first and only child. Continue reading “Bite-size Review: Efuru | Flora Nwapa”

Bite-size Review: Things Fall Apart | Chinua Achebe

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Things Fall Apart | Chinua Achebe

Achebe, often deemed as The Godfather of all written African literature in English, in his exceptional and timeless classic beckons the reader to question and reason with the “conquered” history of Africans. Achebe vividly paints personal family recollections to deconstruct the colonial governance of the fictional Nigerian Igbo village, Umuofia, transposing this deconstruction to the rest of Anglophone African countries. Things Fall Apart examines how the British colonial administration and religious imposition threatens the harmonious customs and tradition of the Umuofian people. Continue reading “Bite-size Review: Things Fall Apart | Chinua Achebe”

Bite-size Review: Americanah | Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie

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Americanah | Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie

I must admit that before reading this novel I was originally sceptical due to my neutral fence against the ‘Chimamanda’ hype. Nonetheless, this book surprised me, and not just the good, gentle, ‘take your breath away’ kind of surprise, but the ‘oh-my-dear-God-did-she-really-just-write-this-I-can’t-believe-what-I’m-reading-somebody-slap-me-I’m-in-book-heaven’ kind of surprise. And I loved every moment – until the last quarter (we will come back to this). Americanah shares a story of two teenage lovers: Ifemelu and Obinze. Continue reading “Bite-size Review: Americanah | Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie”

Bite-size Review: The Famished Road | Ben Okri

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The Famished Road | Ben Okri

1991 Booker Prize winner and that is of no surprise. Okri weaves a world where the physics of reality and spirituality intertwine, imposing an imaginary vertigo on the reader. This is a colourful novel with animated characters and a palpable presence. As you read, the interwined physical and spiritual worlds morph into a life of its own. You can visualise the decrepit roads, smelly gutters, poverty-stricken one-room apartments and petrol polluted air alongside the extraterrestrial, airy, kaleidoscopic, and imaginative spiritual realm. Continue reading “Bite-size Review: The Famished Road | Ben Okri”