Showing posts from November, 2011

121. The Imported Ghanaian by Alba Kunadu Sumprim

Title: The Imported Ghanaian Author: Alba Kunadu Sumprim Illustrator:  Alba Kunadu Sumprim Genre: Non-Fiction/Satire Publishers: Marvik Pages: 264 Year of First Publication: 2006 Country: Ghana This book was supposed to be reviewed within the Ghana Literature Week hosted by Kinna . However, I had to defer it. Alba Kunadu Sumprin's book is a difficult book that provides an unapologetic and scathing look at some supposed Ghanaian eccentricities and foibles. How much the issues discussed are a general Ghanaian problem and how prevalent they are to merit such generalisation is what need to be discussed not whether they occur or not. However, there are certain things that must be cleared before I discuss this book: If you are a man be careful when reading this. According to the author, almost all the things she discussed are caused by men. Even when she was discussing the problems of women, she found ways of making their problems male. The author placed hersel

120. Butterfly Dreams by Beatrice Lamwaka

Butterfly Dreams was shortlisted for the 12th Caine Prize for African Writing Prize in 2011 . It was part of the crime anthology 'Bad Company' published by Pan Macmillan SA in 2008. It has also been included in the Caine Prize for African Writing 2011 anthology To See the Mountain and other stories. Beatrice Lamwaka's story is a sad one. It is a story that represents the true story of many children caught in the unending conflict between the Lord's Resistance Army and the Uganda government in northern Uganda. This conflict has left in its wake many rape victims and child soldiers. And those who escape from their abductors are left traumatised, needing rehabilitation. It is within this setting that Lamwaka's story is set and told and eleven-year old Lamunu is one of such children. Like all children Lamunu also had a dream, a dream to become a medical doctor and take her mother's profession a step higher. Consequently, she loved to learn. She loved book

Proverb Monday, #50

Proverb:  "Nim-nim" nn im. Meaning:  "Knows all", knows nothing. Context:  If you pride yourself on your wisdom, it is a sign of ignorance. No. 4388 in Bu me Bε by Peggy Appiah et al .

Quotes for Friday from Benjamin Kwakye's The Other Crucifix

The elders say that the foreigner never carries the head of the casket. [16] [H]ome is where you go knowing that no matter what happens to you, no matter what others might think of you, you will be loved. Period. No ifs or buts. This is where he spirit feels most comfortable, most restful and most at ease. [17] Culture shock? That was to be asked at the end of my stay, for the shock, if any, of being exposed to a new culture isn't to be measured in days or weeks or even months, but by the depth of many years accumulated, tasted, tested, weighted, felt, loved, rejected, hated, accepted. [26] Here, there was a distance that I couldn't define, and perhaps it was, like air, not definable in its infinite qualities. [32] My imagined seduction stayed imaginary - mind proposes, reality disposes. [43] In our earlier days together, the passion was too hot to suffer these gestures, but in the ebbed heat, when lust plateaus, I became vulnerable. [92] There could be

Book Reading with G.A. Agambila, Author of Journey, a Novel

In our last reading for the year 2011, we will feature Dr Gheysika Adombire Agambila, author of the novel, “Journey”. Gheysika Adombire Agambila was born in Bolgatanga, and was educated in Ghana and the USA, where he had his BA from Brandeis University, an MBA from the University of Rochester, and Ph.D from New York University. Dr Agambila  has worked with Ernst and Young, taught at the University of Ghana Business School, and served as a Deputy Minister of State in the  Ministries of Finance and Economic Planning, Harbours and Railways, and Environment and Science. He also has to his credit a collection of short stories for children, “Solma: Tales from from Northern Ghana”. Dr Agambila will read from the novel, “Journey”, described by reviewer Kari Dako as “…an absorbing exploration of reality in contemporary Ghana…” and by A Denkabe as  “… a fine novel, written in a sober yet often moving style, and rich in the way it reflects the Ghanaian post-colony.” “Journey” is publish

Proverb Monday, #49

Proverb:  Wonnim asa a, na wose atwene nyε dε. Meaning:  If you don't know how to dance, you would say the drums (beats) aren't interesting. Context:  Sour grapes No. 4383 in Bu me Bε by Peggy Appiah et al.

Quotes for Friday from Nii Ayikwei Parkes' Tail of the Blue Bird

This is my contribution to Kinna's Ghana Literature Week, Nov. 14 - 20, 2011 . ____________________________ If you look you will see that whatever happens the birds will sing their song. [1] The ancestors say that the truth is short but, s εbi, when the tale is bad, then even the truth stretches like a toad run over by a car on those new roads they are are building. [2] Ei, the elders say that news is as restless as a bird [5] And when fear catches you, it returns you to screaming, your first language. [7] I wanted to tell him that you do not light a fire under a fruit-bearing tree, but these young people think they invented knowledge so I ignored him. [9] [R]emember that the monkey was eating long before the farmer was born . [9] And I tell them that it is not just about beauty because beauty doesn't pay debts. But do they listen? [13] He couldn't accept, as his grandfather's fellow had, that it was meant to be. His grandfather's li

119. Tickling the Ghanaian - Encounters with Contemporary Culture by Kofi Akpabli

Title: Tickling the Ghanaian - Encounters with Contemporary Culture Author: Kofi Akpabli Genre: Non-Fiction/Contemporary Culture Publishers: TREC Pages: 142 Year of First Publication: 2011 Country: Ghana For Kinna's Ghana Literature Week Kofi Akpabli is a creative writer I have come to admire. His is a journalism completely circumscribed by the field of Creative Writing. His style, of combining keen observation, difficult questions and mirthful writing, makes him unique in this expansive field of words, sentences and descriptions; a field where most practitioners resort to sensationalism, outright lies, and trivialisation, stretching an already suspicious occupation to its negative extremum, to grab people's attention and glean some fame for themselves. Such is the shitload on discerning ears that some, having exceeded their elastic limit, have tuned out from radio, permanently. To such individuals, Akpabli's writing has come as a relief. For having g

118. The Other Crucifix by Benjamin Kwakye

Title: The Other Crucifix Author: Benjamin Kwakye Genre: Fiction/Identity/Immigration Publishers: Ayebia-Clarke Pages: 218 Year of First Publication: 2010 Country: Ghana For  Kinna's Ghana Literature Week My first encounter with Benjamin Kwakye was through his first novel The Cloth of Nakedness .  In that novel Kwakye used a proverb and a character to metaphorise the humorous nature and hierarchical structure of our existence or specifically of our way of living. Using tools within the society, he told of how manipulative the rich could be.  Kwakye's third novel - I am yet to see a copy of his second book, The Sun by Night , on book stands - The Other Crucifix is a different kind of literary delight. It deals with identity, home, and freedom in an immigrant's life. He explores and expands every minutiae of life in an alien country. In doing so things that had always been taken for granted are held onto by such immigrants that letting go is tantam

117. Tail of the Blue Bird by Nii Ayikwei Parkes

Title: Tail of the Blue Bird Author: Nii Ayikwei Parkes Genre: Fiction/Whodunit Publishers: Jonathan Cape Pages: 170 Year of First Publication: 2009 Country: Ghana For Kinna's Ghana Literature Week Tail of the Blue Bird by Nii Ayikwei Parkes is a whodunit of a unique kind. The story is about Kayo, a young forensic scientist who has arrived home after studies abroad to contribute to the development of his country. Having settled in, he realised that making it in this country is less a matter of what you have in your head than it is about knowing the right people and pressing the right buttons or greasing the right palms. Initially, with is profession as a forensic pathologist, he had applied to work for the police but was turned down. According to the police, a forensic pathologist is not their priority as current methods of 'interrogation' has worked and served them perfectly. Having resigned himself to working for the thrifty Mr Acquah, Kayo felt dis

Proverb Monday, #48

This is my contribution to  Kinna's Ghana Literature Week, Nov. 14 - 20, 2011 . __________________ Proverb: Wonnim nipa a, wo ne no nsi koso. Meaning: If you don't know someone, you do not make a partnership with them. No. 4381 in Bu me Bε by Peggy A ppiah et al.

Quotes for Friday from Chinua Achebe's The Trouble with Nigeria

The trouble with Nigeria is simply and squarely a failure of leadership. There is nothing basically wrong with the Nigerian character. There is nothing wrong with the Nigerian land or climate or water or air or anything else. The Nigerian problem is the unwillingness or inability of its leaders to rise to the responsibility, to the challenge of personal example with are the hallmarks of true leadership. [1] One of the commonest manifestations of under-development is a tendency among the ruling elite to live in a world of make-believe and unrealistic expectations. This is the  cargo   cult  mentality that anthropologists sometimes speak about - a belief by backward people that someday, without any exertion whatsoever on their own part, a fairy ship will dock in their harbour laden with every goody they have always dreamed of possessing. [9] In spite of conventional opinion Nigeria has been less than fortunate in its leadership. A basic element of this misfortune is the seminal

New Book: In The Midst Of Loafers by Omohan EBHODAGHE

Let Omohan Ebhodaghe introduce you to his book... ____________________________ About the Author:   Omohan Ebhodaghe was born in Lagos , Niger ia . He attended the universities of Benin and Lagos . He co-edited an anthology of poems and stories entitled Twenty Nigerian Writers: Portraits ; and the author of Hightower . A former teacher, he was the 1993-4 publicity secretary of the Association of Nigerian Authors, Lagos  State Chapter. He lives and works in London , courtesy of a British Council, Lagos office assistance.   Focus:  In terms of sheer size and quality, Spain has her own Don Quixote De La Mancha novel via Miguel de Cervantes Saavedra; Russia has her own War and Peace  novel through Count Leo Tolstoy; India   has her own A Suitable Boy  novel as authored by Vikram Seth; and, now behold Nigeria with his own novel IN THE MIDST OF LOAFERS . And the upcoming  PHOTOCOPIES & ORIGINAL . SYNOPSIS:  SUBJECT MATTERS The 945 page literary novel IN THE MIDST OF LOA