Showing posts from August, 2010

Review of and Additions to the Top 100 List

I made a Top 100 books to be read in five years, alongside other books I would come across. However, the list was not up to 100 books and some books have proved to be almost inaccessible. There are some books that are accessible but I have refrained from reading them. All these have necessitated the need to revise and add unto the list. Besides, individuals I have met have also suggested other books that require my attention. First, V.S. Naipaul's 'In a Free State', which was under the Booker Winners, has been replaced by Vernon God Little by DBC Pierre   William Gaddis (this author was introduced to me by Kinna ) Carpenter's Gothic A Frolic of His Own Somerset Maughan (also introduced to me by Kinna) Of Human Bondage Theatre Amis Martin: I have heard a lot about British authors, positively and negatively. Recently, I have read articles on the death of the novel and the bashing British and American authors have received from critics is enough fo

Bryony's Book Award

I opened my blog to find good news. I serialised new books from new authors and that included Bryony Rheam's This September Sun . This morning I got to know that it has won the the 2010 Zimbabwe Book Publishers Award for First Book... The book is available at the Books of Zimbabwe website . It is also available from independent bookstores within Zimbabwe and South Africa and would be available at amazon soon. However, if you cannot get a copy please direct your email to Extracts from the book, This September Sun, and other amaBooks publications, could be read from their website here . ImageNations contacted Bryony and she has accepted to be interviewed here... Look forward for this interview.

Interview with Myne Whitman, Author of A Heart to Mend

We continue the series we started. Today, I interview the author of A Heart to Mend, a romance novel, that has been published to much acclaim and this is a great achievement if one takes into consideration the dearth of that literary genre on the continent. Myne Whitman , the author of this fresh novel, managed to 'squeeze' some time out of her busy schedule, which included a recent 'showing' at the LA Book Fair, to answer certain questions for us.  Can you tell us something about yourself (place of birth, school and anything in between)? I am a Nigerian blogger, writer and poet. I am also the author of A Heart to Mend, my first novel. I live in Seattle with my husband and write full time. I write mostly romance and love poems though recently I have been trying my pen at literary short stories. I was born at the University of Nigeria Teaching Hospital Enugu, Nigeria and I grew up in that city till my middle secondary school. I attended Ekulu Primary School, Queens Scho

34. You Must Set Forth at Dawn, A Memoir by Wole Soyinka

Title: You Must Set Forth at Dawn Author: Wole Soyinka Genre: Memoir Publisher: Ayebia and Bookcraft Pages: 578 Year of First Publication: 2006 (this edition 2009) I have read Professor Ali Mazrui's article 'Dr Jekyll and Mr. Soyinka' when he addressed some concerns Wole Soyinka had raised about him and his own misgivings. (Thank God that when two academicians clash in opinions and misgivings only shrapnel of knowledge is emitted). I would use Professor Mazrui's title to refer to this man of multiple personalities. My reading of Wole Soyinka's  You Must Set Forth at Dawn , written in the first person as most memoirs are,  presented to me a man of multiple personalities and had he not penned these words, I would have added the 'disorder', yet there is no point of divergence between psychosis and genius. Soyinka is political dramatist who does not dramatise his political involvement but politicise his dramas. His political life,

Interview with Osundolire Ifelanwa, author of On a Lot of Things

This is the third interview in a series of six (perhaps) interviews I have scheduled with different authors. Osundolire is an Architect by training, and finds time to write short stories and poems. I met him through Myne Whitman (author of A Heart to Mend, whom I would also be interviewing on this blog) . Whilst reading this, please let ImageNations know what you want to know about your authors. Can you tell us something about yourself? Apart from my name? I am a man who seeks to find answers in the everyday things I observe around me. I am also a child at heart who plays with everything and finds joy in most things. An architect by profession, I love the creative arts and music, and also love intellectual discourses, particularly about issues that are dear to my heart and which I have a strong passion for. What motivates you to write in general? Everyday people and everyday events are my greatest motivators. Watching a father beat a child on my way to work while the latter is runn

An Interview with Nana Ekua Brew-Hammond, author of Powder Necklace

Following my interview with Tendai Huchu, I continue today with another interview from the author of  Powder Necklace ,  Nana Ekua Brew-Hammond . Can you tell us something about yourself (place of birth, school and anything in between)? I was the only black baby born in the small town of Plattsburgh, New York so I made the paper, my mother tells me. A few years later, my parents moved to New York City and I grew up in Queens for most of my childhood. At 12, my parents decided to send me and my siblings to secondary school in Ghana. It was a life-changing experience for me--even then I knew I would write about it. I even said as much to a classmate and she told me "Just don't go and exaggerate." What particularly motivated you to write this novel? And what motivates you to write in general? I needed to get this story for a number of reasons. 1: I wanted to expose the superiority complex people in the West have concerning Africa. 2: I wanted to make the connection that ju

An Interview with Tendai Huchu, Author of The Hairdresser of Harare

Tendai Huchu Last week I serialised debut literary works from authors from different countries on the continent. Comments from readers were very positive. For most readers, my posts were the first time they had heard of these authors. Thus, it would be important that readers get to know these authors very closely. If the access to the other authors prove positive and if they accept an interview from me, I would again serialised interviews from all the authors I have talked about. I begin today with Tendai Huchu , author of The Hairdresser of Harare . Please leave comments stating what you would want to know from these authors. Can you tell us something about yourself (place of birth, school)? I was born in 1982 in a sleepy mining town north of Harare called Bindura. It was the sort of place where everyone knew your name. I attended the local primary school and then went to boarding school in Harare up to my A Levels Why did you decided to become a writer and how did

Points of Convergence between No Longer At Ease and Fragments

Usually, I try to review novels and not to compare them. However, there comes a time when one cannot run away from a topic, a call, no matter how one tries. This topic had been in my head ever since I reviewed Chinua Achebe's No Longer at Ease  (on September 30, 2009). I dreamt about it, talked about, did everything but obey this call. The only way to prevent an incubus from attacking you is to remain un-asleep, no? Well, that might not even suffice but I know that the only way to obey a call is to respond to it. Finito! So today, in this very post, I respond to this call. No one can challenge the achievements of Ayi Kwei Armah and Chinua Achebe . Even though these two literary giants of African descent may disagree at the academic level, their literary works stated here tend to converge at several points, and diverge at some. This issue has bothered me for so long and I refrained from writing about it, mainly because as a untrained essayist and a first-ladder novice in acade

Two and One from Nigeria--Onaedo, Ifelanwa and Myne Whitman; Also, at the Reading

Nana Ekua's Reading At 7:15 pm yesterday, 13th August 2010, which was a Friday and instead of it being a portentous evening filled with unearthly activities that would gradually converge in evil, we had literary blessings as Nana Ekua Brew-Hammond read from her novel Powder Necklace . The imagistic reading interspersed with humour got everybody laughing. It was a very successful evening in all aspects: the reading, the book purchasing and signing and the conversation that went on on the sidelines. Questions were asked of her and some also congratulated her of telling this story. All I would reveal for now is that it is a coming-of-age novel as I have purchased a copy for future read and review. Also, I met Kinna at Kinna Reads , a Ghanaian book blogger I had met virtually. It was fun talking about books, something I can spend the rest of my life doing.  Righting a Wrong For the past two postings I have been presenting new first novels. So far I have blogged on three of such book

One from Ghana: Powder Necklace by Nana Ekua-Brew Hammond and a Reading at Nubuke

I continue what I started yesterday, to blog five new and first time books from five different authors from three countries. Yesterday I talked about the  duo from Zimbabwe: Tendai and Bryony . Today, I come home, Ghana. It is unfortunate that the volume of book publication (literary, not nursery rhymes produced in a corner shop) in Ghana has taken a negative turn and I hope that by the institution of the  Burt Awards , new writers would be challenged enough to pick up the pen and put something delectable on paper. Powder Necklace by Ekua Brew-Hammond About the Author: "As a kid, I lived in Ghana for three years where I attended boarding school and encountered a small group of kids whose parents had also sent them to Ghana from Europe and the States. I wanted to write a book about that unique hybrid experience of being from two places at the same time, crisscrossing the globe to visit family 'back home' and on other dots of the map, and figuring out how to answer when p