December 30, 2012
Well as we round off 2012 and look forward to another year of literary delight (and occasional disappointment), I’d like to share my favorite reads this year. The titles are not necessarily of books published in 2012 but just titles I happened to read. In no particular order here are the books that awed me in one way or another:
1. In the Time of Love by Nagib Mahfouz
This is the first novel I read by Nobel Laureate Naguib Mahfouz and it certainly won’t be the last. The story is set in Cairo where the author is from and the flavor of the city is felt throughout the text. The story begins with Sitt Ain (mother of the protagonist: Ezzat) who is the engine of the story and the link to all the events. Considered a great woman in her neighborhood due to her charitable role, she is immediately drawn as a person with superior morals and manners.
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June 26, 2012
What a delightful read. Achebe waved his magic wand and made me feel 8 years old again reading the children’s story: Chike and the River.
Chike leaves his mother and his village of Umuofia to settle with his uncle in Onitsha where he would school. He settles into this new life and quickly makes friends in school.
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February 3, 2012
I’m fond of reading Nigerian Literature. Chinua Achebe, Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie, Ben Okri, Helon Habila are amongst my favorite authors… and now, I include Ken Saro-Wiwa. Perhaps it’s the nostalgia of having grown up in Lagos (as an infant to the end of my teens) that echoes the setting in the back of my mind while I read these authors’ literary works. Whether it’s the traditions of the ethnic peoples, the woes and struggles of daily life under oppression (by brutal military dictatorships), corruption, black magic, the civil war (Biafra) or even colonialism, Nigeria can offer a story on any of these fronts. And these authors don’t shy away from revealing these truths through the medium of the written word.
Making sense of it all
Ken Saro-wiwa’s novel Sozaboy, however, encompasses all these facets of Nigeria into one compact story. In about 180 pages, Saro-wiwa’s protagonist, Sozaboy (Nigerian Pidgin English meaning soldier-boy) experiences first hand the
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