Sunday, 23 April 2017

Palace Walk (The Cairo Trilogy #1), 1956, Naguib Mahfouz *****

Palace  Walk is a story set in the beginning of the 20th century. The story of Ahmad Al Jaawad and his house hold in a continuously evolving Egypt. He has a son, Yasin, with his first wife. Their marriage is quickly followed by a divorce because she is a woman of her own ways and wouldn't tolerate her husband's control.
Ahmad marries for the second time to Amina, a submissive woman in every sense of the word. Together they have Khadidja, Aisha, Fahmy and Kamal. Ahmad rules his household with an iron hand and instills fear in his children and wife. For instance, he asks his wife to leave when he finds out that she left the house without his permission in his absence.

However, what his family does not know is that Ahmad is a totally different character when he is with his friends, he loves music, women and wine. Yasin, his oldest son, soon discovers his father's other facet and realises where his own

Sunday, 16 April 2017

Thorns and Roses, 2017, Amaka Azie ****

Thorns and Roses is the story of Ifeoma, struggling to balance her love life with her independence. She and her sisters are brought up in an abusive house hold. They flee, determined to start afresh in Lagos. In a situation where emotional damage has been done, will they succeed? Or will they just fail as their father has always predicted?

There is nothing as refreshing  as to read a good book about Nigerians who live in Nigeria with no intention of emigrating. Almost every book I have read so far this year is about the African immigrant and the African diaspora, do not get me wrong, as I believe that their stories too

Sunday, 9 April 2017

Happiness, Like Water 2013, Chinelo Okparanta ****

Happiness, Like Water is a collection of ten short stories that I enjoyed, in general. 
"Happiness is like water. We're always trying to grab onto it, but it's always slipping between our fingers. And my fingers are thin. With lots of gaps in between"
The main theme of the stories is the mother-daughter relationship. Are mothers always qualified enough to dictate the course of their daughter's life? I find it somewhat worrisome that the female child should live up to her mother's heart desire, even if that means sacrificing her own happiness. At the end of the day, the main aim is to bring up girls who are decision makers, who know how to live up to their own heart content.

The stories that I really enjoyed are:

Sunday, 2 April 2017

Faber and Faber

Apart from my Blogger Spotlight project I also have another open project called publishing houses click here for more info.

In this post I will be talking about Faber and Faber founded in 1929 by Geoffrey Faber in the UK. If you'd like to read more about this publishing house, please visit their website by clicking here.

The books I have read published by this company are

Sunday, 26 March 2017

2017 Winter Read

Finally spring is here and my garden is blossoming with flowers; tulip, hibiscus, daisy and geranium flowers. My sunflower seeds are germinating with pleasure and pride while my parsley and onions are embracing the sun like never before and it is only the beginning of spring.

Lets have a look at what I read during the winter (the first trimster of the year 2017). Please click on book to read review.

Monday, 20 March 2017

Gratitude in Low Voices: A Memoir, 2017, Dawit Gebremichael Habte ****

Gratitude in Low Voices is the inspiring story of Dawit, who had to flee his home country Eritrea in the throes of war to join his elder brother in the USA. Dawit narrates the flow of life coupled with some historical event . I found out Eritrea was Ethiopian colony.
The story started as usual, life was not perfect, but they were happy to be home, his father lived in exile as he was one of those who opposed the Ethiopian government, however, he never stopped caring for his family. In one of the ways he cared for his children was asking them to move from the village to the city where

Monday, 27 February 2017

Tierra de Brujas, 2016, María Ferreira **

Leí sobre el libro por primera vez en el blog Literafrica, me llamó la atención el título "la vida en un psiquíatrico de Kenia" dí por entendido que posiblemente sería un relato sobre el trabajo de  un psiquiatra en un centro psiquiátrico o incluso el relato de un enfermo psiquiátrico ya recuperado. Pues, no acerté, no se trata ni de lo uno ni de lo otro.
Tierra de brujas, es la experiencia de una jovencita española de unos veintitantos años en un pueblo cerca de Nairobi, la historia se podría leer como un diario. Parece ser, que acabó la carrera de psicología en España, al no saber que rumbo darle a su vida decidió

Sunday, 19 February 2017

Ghana Must Go, 2013, Taiye Selasi ***

I am glad I did not purchase this book when it was first published, with all the marketing hype and I am not even sure still why the title "Ghana Must Go". To make matters worse, firstly, I have not read any novel so far with so many short sentences, sometimes even without an action word, the verb, making my reading experience somewhat disengaged and I struggled through the first (not few) pages. Secondly, there is a lot of going to and fro in a confusing way. For instance, it goes without saying that the narrative of pieces of memory combined with actuality could be poetic, artistic and different, however, requires effort to comprehend.Thirdly, I dislike all of the characters, none of them has stamina.

Kweku immigrates to the U.S.A where he studies Medicine and becomes one of

Sunday, 12 February 2017

A Bit of Difference, 2012, Sefi Atta ****

One of the reasons why I have not read this book for a long time is because of its low ratings on Goodreads and Amazon. My interest rekindled when I reviewed Americanah and one my readers said it is the same story line as A Bit of Difference by Seffi Atta. However, I wonder why it is so low rated. Most readers say it is because of the writing style, let me tell you, there is nothing wrong with the writing style it is just different and does not complicate the comprehension of the story. Some say that they do not like the ending, however, it is a typical open-ended story that does not deserve those low ratings.

A Bit of Difference is similar to Americanah, it talks  about racism, hair, love, immigration, family matters, homosexuality and nothing in particular. Seffi Atta intervened in the telling of the story and would not let

Sunday, 5 February 2017

The Beautiful Things That Heaven Bears, 2007, Dinaw Mengestu ****

An Ethiopian refugee flees his home country to the United States of America after his father is brutally assassinated. He lives with his uncle, who also is a refugee, and later on moves into a lowly neighbourhood where he opens a store and meets a woman and her daughter. The Beautiful Things That Heaven Bears might seem like another simple typical immigration story, far from, it narrates on the fate of a

Wednesday, 1 February 2017

Grill and Read Annual Readers' Awards 2017

Anouncing Readers' Awards Nigeria

The Speech House International, initiators of Grill-And-Read programme are happy to announce a call for nominations for the inaugural G&R Annual Readers’ Awards (GaRARA). The awards seek to recognise the contributions of the reading community to the socio-economic development of the nation. The award also recognises that readers occupy a position of influence in the society and that their collective strength can be harnessed to bring about change in the way reading and writing are perceived.  

The awards which will honour readers, authors, publishers, and organisations will come in 13 categories and will include

Sunday, 29 January 2017

The Destination Series Books

The Destination Series

The Destination Series is a set of novels tracking the adventures of the Rowland twins in different countries across Africa. The first two are set in Zimbabwe at the Chinhoyi Caves. The third, to be published soon is set in Ouadane, Mauritania.


The Sleeping Pool 
Not All Myths Or Their Creators Die!

When Shaun Rowland is faced with a fresh threat to the control of his father's

Thursday, 26 January 2017

Buchi Emecheta R.I.P

One of my favourite writers of all time passed away on the 25th of January 2017.

Please click on image to read reviews.

Thank you Buchi Emecheta for your contribution to literature, you'll always be remembered.

Sunday, 22 January 2017

2016 Book of the Year

I read many interesting books in 2016, click here to see my reading highlights, however, Disgrace is outstanding in many ways. This is a novel that could have perfectly been over 400 pages, however, the author was sparse with words and still put across his message accurately. The editing and writing of this novel is perfect. He described the  complexities in human relationship using specific people and their every day life. The quality and form of his prose, the characteristic of his sentence is something I cannot describe in words, it is just a whole different level. With this book he won the 2003 Nobel Prize in Literature, 1999 Booker Prize, 2000 Commonwealth Writers' Prize: Best Book, Africa. It is also one of the best 100 novels written in English. He surely deserves all of them.

I hope I am able to enjoy all of his works as much as I have enjoyed Disgrace, also I look forward to seeing Disgrace the movie.

Have you read Disgrace? Have you read other works of J. M. Coetzee?

I am glad that since I started this blog, books by authors from different countries in the African continent are making my book of the year; Zimbabwe 2012, Mozambique 2013, Tanzania 2014, Nigeria 2015 and lastly South Africa 2016. Please click here to read about this compilation. 

Please click on image to read review of Disgrace.

Sunday, 15 January 2017

Disgrace, 1999, J.M. Coetzee *****

David Lurie (white South African) has sexual intercourse with one of his students, Melanie. To say it is consensual is hard, due to the unequal power relationship between both parties. Professor and student. He is expelled. Following the scandal, he visits his grown up daughter in the country side, where she "farms". While he is there, they are attacked by some black South Africans in their own house, something terrible happens. Another scandal, How will he survive this time? The two of them alone in
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