Showing posts from July, 2009

7. Amma Darko's Faceless

Title: Faceless Author: Amma Darko Genre: Novel Publishers: Sub-Saharan Publishers Pages: 233 Year: 2003 Amma Darko's Faceless tackles a society's neglect of its future leaders, the irresponsibility of fathers, the importance of the media in solving problems and the importance of determination in our lives. It blatantly portrays how a larger 'section' of the society is living and dealing with life as if there is no one looking after them. So difficult is life to such individuals that what to eat is as problematic as where to ease; what to wear and where to sleep and even waking up to the morning sun are seen as miracles. It clearly shows the effect of streetism on the society and how decayed and corrupt society has become. The axiom that 'each one for himself God for us all' can clearly summarise the content of this novel, and to some extent, without taking anything from the author, can act as its second title. Fofo was forced out from home by he

6. Obama vs Ampem-Darko--the Direct and Indirect Link

Title: Dreams from My Father Author: Barack Obama Genre: Memoir Publishers: Three Rivers Press Pages: 442 Year: (this edition 2004) I have been reading and still reading Obama's 'Dream from My Father' and there are several phrases and lessons we can learn from that Memoir. But believe you me, I am not going to review that book for at least three basic reasons: It is not a novel, it is a memoir (an account of the author's personal experiences) almost like an autobiography, though from where he's come from and when the book was written this is no complete autobiography: the man is now the president of America. There would definitely be one when he hits the seventieth mark (that is, if he is still alive); Obama is not an African (oops! that hurts) he is an African American. Okay he is an African or a Kenyan bu I am not reviewing that book; and I am still reading it (not a strong point, I know; but that's why it is the last point). However,

5. How We Buried Puso

Title: How We Buried Puso Author: Morabo Morojele Publishers: Jacana Genre: Novel Year: 2007 Pages: 234 ISBN: 9781770090989 Country: Lesotho 'How we Buried Puso ' is the third novel by an African Writer I have read this month (July). Since I am a bit busy and in a hurry I would give a quick comment on the book. Perhaps a proper review would follow, if it does not I hope this would suffice. The book can be classified as a Lyrical Narrative written in the First Person, if only there is a genre of this sort. Under normal circumstances, I don't read books written in the first person as it does not afford the reader the chance of knowing more about the different characters. However, Morabo Morojele's book is no ordinary work. The book is about a young man, Molefe (or ' Lefe ) who left home for greener pastures abroad like many Ghanaians and Africans for that matter. He encountered a lot of difficulties that most foreigners are faced with and ye

'Dynsaty-sation' of Africa's Democracies and Autocracies

When Laurent Kabila -led forces were marching all the way to Zaire (DR Congo) I was in the Secondary School and we used to joke with it. We would draw the approaching military and write beneath it '10 km away from Kinshasa ' and we would laugh at Mobutu Sesseseko . A friend by name Prince or Little use to do these drawings and we were happy that that man who was 'famed' to be richer than his country is finally going to be thrown out. Our happiness was affirmed by the confirmation of the resulting overthrow. Mobutu died shortly whilst in exile in Morocco. So Laurent Kabila became the president of Zaire renamed it Democratic Republic of Congo (DR Congo) and all were jubilant at least peace shall return. But it never did. Kabila was also assassinated and his son Joseph Kabila took over. A dynasty was then formed. Should the son succeed the father? I have no objection so far as the son has the necessary qualifications to become a president. Where my problem lies is whe

4. African Agenda—A Reader's Review

Title: African Agenda Author: Camynta Baezie Genre: Novel Pages: 503 ISBN: 9781419618987 Year: 2008 Publishers: Book Surge Country: Ghana Biography Camynta Baezie was born in Ghana and has travelled all over the world. After being awarded the Ridley Fellowship in Transport in 1996 to pursue his Ph.D. research work, he obtained a Ph.D. in transport engineering from the University of Newcastle upon Tyne. He has presented and published papers for international conferences in Antwerp, Cape Town, Dublin and Bournemouth. The author currently lives in the Kingdom of Bahrain. Synopsis Are you an Africanist? Do you believe in the unity of Africa? Dr. Camynta Baezie’s first novel, ‘African Agenda’ is as ambitious in scope and content as the man himself. As a crossover between Tom Clancy, David Baldacci, Robert Ludlum and Craig Thomas, Camynta’s first novel would rock you and shock you at the same time. The novel will cause the doubting Thomases to revise their n

Facing Our Demons

It is a fact that every country has its own problems. Be it humanitarian, unemployment, job losses, accidents, rush-hour, murders, developing countries are not alone and so definitely Ghana is not alone. However, what make ours a topic to discuss are the causes of the problems. I definitely am not going to assume the role of an omniscient investigator, neither am I going to pretend to wield within my hand or have in my mind or heart the answers to our numerous problems. However, it is my believe that if we should all dig deep into ourselves as human beings, search every interstice, every nook and cranny (forget the cliché), every orifice, every artery, every nerve and neuron, we will find the causes of our problems with its solution locked somewhere. After all, is not said that identifying of the problem is the first step towards solving it? Though as a country we are faced with numerous and diverse problems, the root causes are common. Hence, identifying one cause could help in rect

3. Not Without Flowers--A Partial Review

Title: Not Without Flowers Author: Amma Darko Genre: Novel Publishers: Sub-Saharan Publishers Pages: 372 ISBN: 978-9988647131 Year: 2007 Country: Ghana As I stated in one of my postings, I am dedicating my readings to African Writers and as such I have set a target of reading at least two of them every month--not a difficult target if you should ask me, especially knowing that it takes at most three days to complete a 500-page novel; but with work and other activities looming and beckoning I think this is fair target. Besides, it looks as if I have set out to review all the books I read (unintentionally though), which in my opinion is not a bad idea. We (Africans & Ghanaians) must promote our writers and make sure that we help them achieve their dreams. Readers make writers. Where would Sidney Sheldon be if he had no readers or even J.K. Rowling or J.R.R. Tolkien or even Tolstoy? I believe that what the musicians couldn't do the writers could do, judging fro

Not Without Flowers

This is the latest book I am reading; my second Amma's book and it has not so far disappointed me. I love the passion with which Amma Darko writes her story, the portrayal of a decaying society caught up in the midst of superstition and archaic tradition. She is the new voice in Ghanaian writing and I hope you get the time to read her. I would do a comprehensive review of this novel when I am through but like her last but one novel Faceless , Not Without Flowers tackle Ghana's social issues like no other. She portrays the negative side of the dual community, one that is most often hidden and untalked of; one that would hit every thinking person with a force so huge that it would not leave the reader the same; one that would awaken the irresponsible behaviour and the indifferent attitude of people. Amma is one person I have grown to like within a spate of two or three weeks. She would make you cry, laugh and annoyed in just one paragraph. Hers is a story of life; a story that i

Ode to a Broken Statue--Dedicated to Osagyefo Dr Kwame Nkrumah

In the land of Nkroful, a Nazareth In faraway Nzema, you, Nana Amaga, were born. As a lonely limping quintessential lamb You fought fiercely not for your few needs But against their deadly deeds And incredulous creeds, carefully and Shrewdly shrouded in shallow showmanship Of great guiles and glamour guns The grand gods of Shaka the zealous Zulu and Zeus Saw sprouting spirit of spotless selflessness And imbued in your budding bones Our relentless requests for liberation They dipped you into a cauldron of ichor And unlike Achilles, it covered every shadow you shed Rushing through every vessel They tied your plasmatic placental pipe to theirs And their poetic tongues with yours Making you their earthly linguist You washed your hands in the pot of rainwater Wedged between the folds of the Nyamedua And so dined with them their ambrosial food From there your manhood was affirmed… Confirmed by the Ageless sage who supervised your Rite of Passage… Hence you took the forms of b